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September 26, 2010 / howgood1

V’ahavta

The following is from the Jewish Virtual Library.

The three paragraphs of the Shema, comprised of biblical verses, were also said in the daily Temple service. The first paragraph is the continuation of the Shema verse, from Deuteronomy 6:5-9, starting with the word “v’ahavta.” This paragraph deals with the acceptance of Divine rule. This section consists of an affirmation of belief in God’s unity and in His sovereignty over the world, an unconditional love of God, and a commitment to the study of His teachings. It emphasizes the religious duties to love God, to teach Torah to one’s children, to talk of Torah at every possible time, to put on tefillin, and to place mezuzot on the doorpost of one’s home.

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5. And you shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart and with all your soul, and with all your means. ה. וְאָהַבְתָּ אֵת יְ־הֹוָ־ה אֱלֹהֶיךָ בְּכָל לְבָבְךָ וּבְכָל נַפְשְׁךָ וּבְכָל מְאֹדֶךָ:
6. And these words, which I command you this day, shall be upon your heart. ו. וְהָיוּ הַדְּבָרִים הָאֵלֶּה אֲשֶׁר אָנֹכִי מְצַוְּךָ הַיּוֹם עַל לְבָבֶךָ:
7. And you shall teach them to your sons and speak of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk on the way, and when you lie down and when you rise up. ז. וְשִׁנַּנְתָּם לְבָנֶיךָ וְדִבַּרְתָּ בָּם בְּשִׁבְתְּךָ בְּבֵיתֶךָ וּבְלֶכְתְּךָ בַדֶּרֶךְ וּבְשָׁכְבְּךָ וּבְקוּמֶךָ:
8. And you shall bind them for a sign upon your hand, and they shall be for ornaments between your eyes. ח. וּקְשַׁרְתָּם לְאוֹת עַל יָדֶךָ וְהָיוּ לְטֹטָפֹת בֵּין עֵינֶיךָ:
9. And you shall inscribe them upon the doorposts of your house and upon your gates. ט. וּכְתַבְתָּם עַל מְזוּזֹת בֵּיתֶךָ וּבִשְׁעָרֶיךָ:

If you’d like to hear a traditional chanting of the V’ahavta, go here and click the “chanting” link.

It is this specific part of the Sh’ma which reminds me daily that unless I pass on my Jewish heritage and culture to my children, no one else will.

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