Bochurim in Yeshiva Gedola of Greater Miami are being rewarded with a five-day trip to the west coast for successfully learning through all 53 chapters of Tanya.
By Miami Yeshiva Shluchim
Many bochurim end their year wondering what is it that they are taking away with them, and as we come closer to the conclusion of the year, they start breaking in to conclusions as to what exactly did they gain, now of course when we’re dealing with Torah everyone takes away, of course, everyone according to their own capacity and affinity to certain areas amongst the vast subjects in Torah, some bochurim will excel in learning gemorah while others in chassidus, the common factor is that everyone hopefully leaves their year with a set of skills that will help him in their personal life.
This article isn’t meant to portray the productivity of all the Yeshivos as a whole as we come closer to the end of the year rather to show the community how a group of shluchim sent to a small yeshiva located in south beach Miami was able to motivate its whole student body towards one goal, one project, which was to learn Tanya.
Now we all know the great advantages of learning Tanya and its many claims to fame, but most of the times we overlook and do not fully appreciate the effectiveness and accuracy of its words.
It is mentioned many times across chassidus how Tanya has the same letters as איתן (strong, steadfast), and how the learning of Tanya brings to the forefront this aspect of our G-dly soul upon learning it, whether it’s memorizing its words or learning its concepts thoroughly, Tanya will always have a desirable effect on one’s person, it is true that as in any other aspect in life, according to our toil and effort is the reward, here we can apply this very teaching to mean that according to how much we place our self in Tanya by going through it and at the same time allowing Tanya to go through us, one will see an equally commensurate reward both in the physical and spiritual aspects of one’s life.
Now to be able to experience this might not be as common as your next breath of air, on the contrary I would argue that it is a quite difficult task and not many of us can experience such an epiphany unless we exert much effort, but coming from someone that has not only seen this enlightenment take affect by an individual, but that has witnessed a whole Yeshivah take on a project and be involved in it day and night, and to have seen the change and effect Tanya can have on one’s person, I can only say that it is truly a unique and wonderful experience to witness and an encouragement on each one of us to strive to reach such a level of involvement.
The students at the Yeshivah Gedolah of Miami, took on an immense project, a project that quite literally encompassed their whole existence, an experience that they will take with them long after their Yeshivah years have concluded, this project required the students to learn through all 53 chapters of Tanya, through a system implemented by the group of shluchim in which the students were required to partake of tests, on said chapters.
Because of the short period of time and the exceedingly great task at hand, there were moments where students had to learn up to 5 chapters of Tanya over a span of 2 weeks, and although at many points along the project it became an intimidating task given its enormity, the students persevered and went forward and impressed anyone that had the chance to see them at work, another very impressive account is that most of these students maintained averages ranging between 80 to 100 percent.
At the same time, part of this program also included organized activities for all the students who had a score of 85 percent or higher on their tests and a monthly raffle. I would like to take the opportunity to mention our gratitude to many of the families of our community for lending their backyards to us and helping us reward the students throughout the extent of the project with a BBQ and other outdoor activities.
And for the final prize we intend on taking all the students with a total average of 80 percent on a five-day trip to the west coast visiting and hiking through many national parks, spending Shabbos by a shliach in Arizona and concluding our trip with one last final hike in Los Angeles, CA.
I believe I can say that the most impressive effect that this mivtzah has had on the students is that their learning in Tanya encompassed their whole day, during their brakes, whenever they had a free moment between their shiurim, they literally lived off Tanya and as many of the Hanholas Hayeshivah witnessed, it quite literally brought out the איתן aspect in every student, because the amount of effort demonstrated by each and every one of them was such that cannot be explained or conveyed in writing, it can only be fully appreciated by witnessing these events first hand and I can only say that it was sincerely something greater than understanding. To have the opportunity to see how Tanya was being infused in their very life and every breath is something quite frankly unique and inspiring and with all certainty I can say that it gave them a different outlook in life.
In conclusion, everyone can equally agree that every student in Miami Yeshivah Gedolah, is not only walking away with a greater knowledge of Tanya, but with a different outlook in life, I can honestly say that every student will be walking out of this year saying with surety that they are walking in to their summer, the next year of Yeshivah and the next phase in life with 53 chapters of Tanya under their arm, and this is something that Yeshivah Gedolah of Miami can proudly share with all other Lubavitcher-Mosdos and communities, that their Bochurim are all leaving with this common factor, Tanya and its everlasting change in one’s life. And it should be an encouragement to anyone who reads this to promote the learning of Tanya as a quintessential part of a student’s formation, and what better way to do this than to make a mivtzah out of it, emphasizing the importance of learning and developing a yearning for Tanya.
I would also like to take the opportunity to congratulate every single student who made it until the end, and overcame the many challenges that presented themselves, throughout the duration of the project and wish them mutch hatzlocha in applying all that they have learned in every aspect of their life
I would also like to congratulate Berel Yanover, Avraham Yaffe, Mendel Vogel, Shmulik Vogel, Levi Teichtel, Yossi Simpson, and Moshe Colin the group of shluchim who came this year to Miami Yeshivah Gedolah for their continued involvement and efforts placed in this immense task and wish them all Hatzlocha in their future endeavors.
I would also like to congratulate all of the staff here in Yeshivah for their continuous help and involvement in all the mivtzas and activities in the Yeshivah.
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Zelle: mendel vogel, [email protected], 3022525556