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Parshat Bo: The Meaning of Mitzvot

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When we think of mitzvot (commandments), we may think of sacrifice, suppressing our will, or another burden to worry about. In Judaism, mitzvot are not supposed to be stained with subduing our will, and by extension, our identity. This sadness is far from the ideal, as Moshe reprimands Bnei Yisrael in Sefer Devarim, “Because you would not serve the LORD your God in joy and gladness over the abundance of everything” (28:47). Mitzvot are, in actuality, supposed to be the greatest expression of our will, a service of the inner and higher self that brings us great joy.

In Parshat Bo, as Bnei Yisrael near closer and closer to their freedom, Moshe and Aharon struggle to convince Pharaoh to release them. As the Torah recounts, “So Moshe and Aharon were brought back to Pharaoh and he said to them, ‘Go, worship the LORD your God! Who are the ones to go?’ Moses replied, ‘We will all go, young and old: we will go with our........

© The Times of Israel (Blogs)

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