Monday, March 11, 2019

Intent is Everything

"Let us further bear in mind that even in the case of script, which one might think cannot possibly have anything but symbolic significance, its symbolic value, when used for a sacred purpose, depends on the intent of the scribe who executes it. Thus, in the writing of a ספר תורה [Scroll of the law], the intention of the scribe is so essential that the Scroll is considered as having the קדושת ספר תורה [the sanctity required for a Scroll of the Law] only if it was written  לשם קדושת ספר תורה [with the intent that it should be a sacred Scroll of the Law]. Whenever the scribe writes down the Name of God, he must enunciate each time that it is now his intention to write these letters for the purpose of setting down the name of God, לשם קדושת השם. The sanctity of these letters is so completely determined by the attitude of the scribe who writes them down that a Torah Scroll written by a heretic -- a man whose attitude when he wrote out the Name of God may be assumed to have been contrary to the Divine truth [inherent in the Torah], so that one might even say he did the work לשם עבודה זרה ([for the purpose of idol worship]) -- must be burned." 

Rav Samson Raphael Hirsch on Shemos 36:8, translation by Gertrude Hirschler in The Chumash, Judaica Press


Allow me to add that if Zionism is approached like idolatry, which it usually is, [worship of the state, worship of the army - heaven save us from such folly] then the books with this approach are worse than a Sefer Torah written with intent of idolatry because in such a Sefer Torah the words are correct but the intent is wrong but here the words themselves have idolatrous content.

No comments:

Post a Comment