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Spreading Torah

Rabbi Yishmael bar Rabbi Yehudah omer: Halomed al m'nas l'lamed, maspikim b'yado li'lmod ul'lamed, v'halomed al m'nas la'asos, maspikim b'yado li'llmod, ul'lamed, lishmor, v'la'asos.
Rabbi Yishmael son of Rabbi Yehuda used to say: one who learns for the sake of teaching will have enough means to learn and teach. One who learns for the sake of doing will have enough means to learn and teach, observe and do.
Commentators ask an obvious question: Isn't teaching great? Why does one who learns in order to teach get less than the one who learns in order to "do"?
The Benayos Beramah answers the question as follows: The doing in this saying of Rabbi Yishmael is the doing of outreach, of converying Torah to people who do not wish to be taught, to bring them to the point whereby they will come to want to learn. Such a person, whose scholarship is dedicated to being able to transfer the Torah so well that they can inspire even those who are far away from Torah, should be supported with greater funding, in order to further their efforts.

- Pirkei Avoth (Ethics of the Fathers) 4:6 based on Rabbi Twerski's Visions of the Fathers pg. 212 Shaar Press


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