S’ee Saviv (Avraham Fried)

August 27, 2021

This week’s haftorah, the sixth of the seven Shivah D’nechemta, focuses on the messianic vision of a nation and a world united behind a single goal and purpose. The navi describes in great detail the pomp and fanfare that will be displayed at the time of the Geulah – a state of euphoria likewise experienced by Klal Yisroel as they were poised to enter Eretz Yisroel from the midbar.

שְׂאִי סָבִיב עֵינַיִךְ וּרְאִי כֻּלָּם נִקְבְּצוּ בָאוּ לָךְ בָּנַיִךְ מֵרָחוֹק יָבֹאוּ וּבְנֹתַיִךְ עַל צַד תֵּאָמַנָה
Lift up your eyes all around and see that they are all gathered and have come to you; your sons will come from afar and your daughters will be raised at [their] side. (Yeshayahu 60:4)

The Metzudas Dovid, Rav Dovid Altschuler of Prague (1697-1769) writes, that the above pasuk refers to the holy city of Yerushalayim – the focal point of the nation – upon the nation’s return to Eretz Yisroel. Every Jew will stream through her walls on his way up to Har HaBayis, and the holy city will rejoice upon the sight of her children returning.

The pasuk then speaks about the scattered Jewish nation: בָּנַיִךְ מֵרָחוֹק יָבֹאוּ – Your sons will come from afar, meaning they will physically return to the Land.
HaRav Meir Stern shlit’a, Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshiva Gedola of Passaic, NJ points out that in truth, this pasuk isn’t only speaking of a physical return, but rather is speaking in spiritual terms as well. The navi is talking about Yidden returning “from afar” by doing teshuvah – by repenting and coming close to Hashem. All those who have been adrift, far away from Hashem and His Torah will now come back into the fold.

Yeshaya HaNavi is telling us that very soon, yachid v’rabim – every one of us, together – will find our way back to Hashem’s Torah. Very soon, the time will come when we will ALL return to Hashem.

This Motzei Shabbos, us Ashkenazim will begin reciting Selichos – a unique secret weapon utilized in attaining Divine forgiveness. The Midrash relates that Dovid Hamelech was distraught when he saw through ruach hakodesh that the Beis Hamikdash would be destroyed and that korbanos would no longer be offered. “How will a Yid atone for his sins?” he wondered.
Hashem replied: “When suffering will befall Klal Yisroel because of their aveiros, they should gather before Me in complete unity. Together they should confess their wrongdoings and recite Selichos – when they do that, I will answer their prayers.”

With this in mind as we head into Shabbos Selichos – Shabbos Parshas Ki Savo – I thought that we could enjoy a song to the navi’s words that we highlighted above. S’ee Saviv was composed by the remarkable rebbi and songwriter R’ Hillel Paley, and was sung by the incomparable Avraham Fried on his album Yachid V’rabim – My Fellow Jew back in 2001. Among the many song choices that I encountered during this busy week, in the end I felt especially drawn to this upbeat oompah to help lead us into the days ahead.

Both singer and composer alike are known for their exceptional ability to exude acceptance and love they have for their fellow Jew. This is a lesson that I wish to take with me as I enter the final days of the year – a lesson that I will need to use in order to find my way back home.

Wishing all of you a very uplifting Shabbos!

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