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  • Abigail Mottahedeh

Shiriyah Winning Dvar Torah- Day 2: Shed Your Light Unto Others!

Updated: Apr 6, 2022

What is a guiding light? Is it a flashlight? Is it a firefly? Or is it a person who has a profound influence on others and is a source of inspiration. We, the seniors, strive to embody the idea of being a guiding light as we lead the younger grades on the right path within their high school career, whether it is in regards to their social or academic endeavors.

We, the seniors, are the leaders. We are the game changers. We are role models.

Not only are us seniors a guiding light within North shore, but even on a larger scale, every single person in Am Yisrael has the ability and opportunity to help others and set precedents. As the chosen nation, we must uphold and value Torat Hashem and the Creatures of Hashem.

What does it mean to be the chosen nation?

Jews from all walks of life believe that Hashem picked us for a specific purpose. According to Rav Kook, we were chosen because we are the only nation who is capable of accepting Hashem and His Torah in its entirety. By choosing us, Hashem has entrusted the Jewish people with a specific mission: to be a light unto the nations and to uphold our covenant with Hashem.

What does it mean to be an "Or Lagoim," or light unto the nations?

This concept can be looked at as Hashem promising to restore Bnei Yisrael to Eretz Yisrael. This return will cause other nations to open their eyes, and look up to the people of Israel, as well as to follow the path of Hashem. Additionally, the way we interact and build relationships between other nations is crucial as we are all created Be'tzelem Elokim, in God's image.

Jews and non-Jews alike have a relationship with Hashem. The Mishnah states that "Humanity was produced from one man, Adam, to show Hashem’s greatness." We all descended from Adam and were all created from Hashem.

How can us Jewish High school students take on the position of being a light unto the nations?

The Netziv explains that this function is achieved by inspiring the entire world through an awareness of Hashem’s miracles and his all-knowing power. We must spread the knowledge of Hashem by living among the nations and allowing them to witness how we sacrifice ourselves to fulfill Hashem's will. Chassidus teaches us that everything has potential for a divine spark.We have the ability to bring Kedusha into everything in existence. The torah command us to emulate the 13 attributes of Hashem, meaning that we should be just as compassionate and as kind as Hashem. We are the holy role models for other nations.

During Shiriyah, each and every team exemplifies the 13 attributes of Hashem through the activities we take part in as well as our interactions with our peers.

We highlight his attributes of:

  1. Rachum Ve'chanun- Hashem is compassionate, merciful and gracious. So too, we emulate this quality through our donations of clothes and toiletries to various charities in order to help those in need.

  2. Notzer Chesed- Hashem also shows kindness. It amazes me to see the unfiction of each grade in order to attain a common goal.This goal geos much farther than just Winning Shiriyah, but also includes creating strong bonds with each other.

Class of 2022, I am so proud to be a part of such a hard-working grade.

We serve not only as an Or L'goyim, but an Or L'kol Ha Beit Sefer (a light unto the school), and we fulfill the Divine mandate and mission by responding to Hashem's challenge.

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