Yesterday was a special day at Pardes. Not because Meir was roaming the halls with a mass of students, singing at the top of his lungs, although that was part of it. Not because there was dancing in the beit midrash, although that was part of it as well. The occurrences above, while special, have been seen from time to time at Pardes before.
But, this time, the spirited nigunnim sung in the halls and the circle dancing in the middle of the beit midrash were in celebration and commemoration of a Hachnasat Sefer Torah, the welcoming in of a Torah that was given to the Pardes community. This sefer torah was brought into our community with a number of meaningful rituals: It was brought, under the shade of a tallit, to every classroom where Torah was being learned that morning; it was escorted through the halls in which endless conversations referencing the impact of Torah study can be heard; and it was passed, from person to person, around the beit midrash, out to Continue reading