How do you think learning Torah is different than learning math or english?
What makes learning Torah so unique in the hierarchy of mitzvot?
The Gra: a person has to try and hold the Torah so beloved to him because every word that he learns is another mitzvah. How do we know this? Because if one is studying Torah and a mitzvah comes up that someone else around can do, they should do it. (Every second of learning is another mitzvah)
When did Hashem command us to learn Torah?
What aspects of Torah study do you think affect us the most?
Rabeinu Chananya: The highest level of learning is limasya (practicality, knowing what to do)
Rashi: to understand the words of the Mishnah and how to put two contradictory sources together, learning to capture the ideas of the Torah (nothing about limaysa)
knowing what to do (limaysa) vs to understand (lishma)
The Rush: The essence of limud Torah is coming to the truth
We have established that the Torah acts as a guide in how to do mitzvot, but there is a second element.
Hashem is an infinite Being who created a finite world and the only beings that have free will are us. How is there a connection between the infinite and the finite? The answer: Hashem created a mechanism that is on one side finite (words, concepts, physical object), but inside of it Hashem put His infinite in, ie, the Torah which is why through learning Torah we connect to Hashem like no other mitzvah. When we connect to Torah we connect to the infinite (according to the Ramchal in Derech Hashem).
What if I struggle to understand what I'm learning?
According to the Kitzur Shulchan Orech, studying Torah, even without comprehension is a worthwhile task. Although one may not properly understand their studies in this world, they will be understood in next. For this reason, even one who is unable to understand everything should still study Torah.
Are we just meant to only learn Torah?
"Learning Torah isn't just information, but transformation" - Rabbi Bernstein
Koren Sacks Shavuot Machzor, Introduction, lxxxi
“For in truth this always was our greatest gift: the Torah, our constitution of liberty under the sovereignty of God, our marriage contract with Heaven itself, written in letters of black fire on white fire, joining the infinity of God and the finitude of humankind in an unbreakable bond of law and love, the scroll Jews carried wherever they went, and that carried them. This is the Torah: the voice of Heaven as it is Heard on Earth, the word that lights the world.”
Have you ever learned anything that stuck with you? What was it and how did it change your perspective on life?