- Moshe Ben-Chaim
- "What is the reason behind wearing tzitzis?"
- Rambam's grouping of Tzitzis together with Tfilin and Mezuza, seems
to indicate a similarity between these three items. Also, there's a
specific location for each of these mitzvos:
- Regarding these 3 locations, leprosy is also associated. Tzaraas can
permeate a body a house or clothing.
- I believe the connection is that by Tzaraas, G-d is trying to affect
the person to do teshuva for lashan hara (slanderous speech) by
attacking something with which he identifies with. A house, clothing
and one's body are all objects which a person identifies as
"his". G-d will send tzaraas to these objects to relate to
this individual, that he did something wrong-he spoke lashan hara.
(There is a reason as well why leprosy is the punishment here.) By
affecting that which is close to him, he will hopefully get the
message before G-d has to affect his body directly. We see this idea
in Job as well. First his possessions were smitten, then, after he
didn't learn the lesson , his body was smitten.
- So the house, body and clothing are objects with which we identify
ourselves. People invest great amounts of energy into building and
decorating their homes, buying beautiful clothing, and keeping fit in
gyms,.....all because this is how they achieve their self image. This
is not necessarily a wrong, so long as it is in check with the
intellect. People need self esteem.
- Regarding Tzitzis, Tfilin, and Mezuza, these 3 objects are to be
placed on these 3 areas in order to inform us where real security
comes from. A person faces the danger, (when building beautiful homes,
wearing great clothes, and building one's muscles) in that he will
feel he himself is the source of his security, and he will forget
Hashem. The pasuk in the Torah states, "V'Ram livavecha,
V'shauchachta es Hashem Elokecha". "Your heart will be
raised, and you will forget Hashem your G-d". G-d was well aware
of this danger in man's psyche, and gave us safeguards to keep us in
check. So, as we clothe ourselves every morning, and as we place the
tfilin on our bodies every day, and as we enter our homes and see the
mezuza, we constantly are reminded that we are placing our trust in
Hashem, not in ourselves. We know of course that we can make ourselves
richer by working harder, and that by staying home we will definitely
not earn money, however, as the Gomorra in Baitza states,
- Hashanna and Yom Kippur, all of man's needs are decided for