Have I got a challenge for you!
I’ve been seeing a number of postings on social media in which people are saying that the term “corona” has to do with crown and that this crown refers to a married woman’s kisui rosh and that therefore women need to be more careful about that. I also saw a few other posts about the idea that we women need to be more careful about the tzniut of our clothes overall. A few of them even say that this virus can be linked to a lack of care involving tzniut. Others just imply it.
There are those who defend these posts saying that it’s just a way to encourage women to be more careful about tzniut or about kisui rosh. One person referred to it as “upping our mitzvah game.”
My answer is that if we want to up our mitzvah game and encourage others to do so, there are far better ways to do it.
This is where my challenge comes in. If you truly want to up your mitzvah game, try the following:
- Pick a mitzvah. Any mitzvah. It could be one that you already practice regularly, one that you don’t practice regularly, or one that you don’t practice at all but that piques your curiosity. Maybe it is Tzniut or Kisui Rosh. Maybe it’s Shabbat. Maybe it’s Kibbud Av Va’Em. Maybe it’s Taharat HaMishpachah. Maybe it’s something else. Just pick one that interests you.
- Pledge that you’ll spend 5-15 minutes per day learning about that mitzvah. Make sure you learn both the classic sources (such as Mishna and Gemara) and contemporary sources so that you get the practical halacha aspect. To quote from a novel that I love, “Can you really earn G-d’s blessing with empty gestures and mindless rote?” We need to understand the mitzvot so that we can practice them better and with true joy.
- Keep in mind that the zechut of your learning (and practicing, as applicable) should go toward someone you know who is affected by this virus. Maybe it’s someone who is actually sick with it. Maybe it’s someone who has other health issues and is high-risk. Maybe it’s someone who has lost parnassah. Whoever it is, keep that person in mind.
THIS is how we up our mitzvah game. No judgments. Just learning and practicing.
Who’s with me?
Let this be a zechut for the Refuah Shleimah of my friends Chana Yocheved Avia bat Shifra Chaya and Tsirel Efrat bat Leah.