Do You Have Any Books?

Do You Have Any Books?

Shalom Aleichem!

I hope you’re enjoying Passover.

At one of our Seders, someone shared the following story:

Rabbi Avika Eiger (b. Hungary 1761-1838) was once a guest in someone’s home. He did not have any books with him, so he asked his host, “Do you have any books?”

His host responded that he had a copy of the responsa of the Rashba (Rabbi Solomon ben Abraham ibn Adret, b. Barcelona 1235-1310).

Rabbi Eiger began to delve into the text. After a short while, he informed his host that the book was, unfortunately, missing a page.

“Would you like me to write that page for you?” inquired Rabbi Eiger of his host.

“Sure,” replied the host.

With that, Rabbi Eiger proceeded to write the missing page, verbatim.

There seem to me to be two (or more?) options as to what took place:

1. Rabbi Eiger had previously memorized the book and was therefore able to write the missing page word-for-word;

2. He became so taken by his study that he began to think like the Rashba, and was thus able to write the missing page on his own.

Perhaps both are the story of the Exodus. On the one hand, we tell the dramatic, thousands-year-old story; on the other hand, we are enjoined to live it. 

Shabbat Shalom and warm wishes for a kosher & happy Passover,

Shaul

P.S. To see pictures of the progress on our kitchen renovation project, click here.  If you are in Queens for the end of Passover, please join us for “Moshiach’s Meal” on Tuesday at 7:15pm.

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