|Post Tisha B'Av Reflections: Torah Study & Redemption|
At the end of forty years following Israel's exodus from Egypt, Moshe began to expound the Torah in seventy languages. The very mouth which had said, "I am not a man of words" now said, "These are the words." And regarding this the prophet exclaimed (Yeshayahu 35:6): "Then the lame shall skip like a hart, and the tongue of the mute shall sing." Why? For "water has broken out in the wilderness and streams in the plains". (Midrash Tanchuma, Devarim #2)
As wonderful as it is to learn about the metamorphosis of Moshe as a leader, speaker, teacher and extraordinary human being, one may wonder: Why would the Midrash illustrate Moshe's transformation from "not a man of words" into the man who could present the Book of Words and expound it in seventy different languages, with a verse which refers to the Messianic Times?
We all know that Moshe's ability to become a speaker cannot be attributed to the Redemption; Moshe never even lived to enter the Land of Israel!
Maybe, we can uncover a clue in an earlier part of the Midrash which states; "Rabbi Yitchak said: if you are speech impaired, study Torah and you will be healed."
Moshe is our Torah teacher, he embodies the eternal quality of Torah; it is through Torah that he was able to tap in to the blessing of Redemption and came to exemplify the verse "and the tongue of the mute shall sing". Torah is what healed him and gave him a voice.
It is the day after Tisha B'Av; we have mourned for our losses, and we have mourned for what has not yet been rebuilt. Now what? We forget what we have. We forget that, we too can experience Redemption. We forget that, through the study of Torah, we get glimpses of Redemption, we forget that Torah can heal us and bring light to the darkness in our lives. We forget that, by accessing the flow of the blessings of Torah, we can create a reality which not only parallels the reality of the Messianic Times, but a reality that has the power to determine it. It is by irrigating the dryness of the exile with the nurturing springs of Torah that we will transform the muteness of our suffering into the song of Redemption, for "water has broken out in the wilderness and streams in the plains".