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Tefillin are small black boxes with leather straps containing excerpts from the text of the Pentateuch – Torah has written on parchment. Both tefillin and parchment are made from the skin of a kosher animal. The word “tefillin” comes from the Hebrew “tfila” – “prayer.” In many languages, the name phylactery “amulet” stuck for tefillin. Imposing tefillin is one of the commandments of Judaism: once a day, adult men tie tefillin on the head and arm, so that the hand tefillin is on the biceps of the arm opposite the heart, and the head tefillin are in the middle of the head above the eyes. At the same time, one needs to be as concentrated and focused as possible on the meaning of the commandment – the recognition of the Will of the Highest over himself.
Tefillin pair: on the right – worn on the arm, on the left – head tefillin
But there are commandments that require the understanding of the reasons for their establishment. Such regulations of the Torah include, for example, the commandment of tefillin, and we have every right to consider the reasons for its establishment.
Tefillin and Exit from Egypt
In an attempt to understand the reason for the establishment of the commandment by the Creator about putting on tefillin, it is necessary to speak, first of all, about leaving Egypt. After all, a part of Torah passages, placed in tefillin boxes, is dedicated specifically to the liberation of Jews from Egyptian slavery. The main idea of the Torah in relation to the commandment of putting on tefillin in the classical and fundamental text, an excerpt from which we give here: I want to tell you the reasons for the many obligations of the Torah. Thus, the main goal of tefillin is to constantly remind of the withdrawal from Egypt and the miracles we witnessed.
In Shulchan Aruch it is said that when imposing tefillin, it is necessary to think that God commanded us to put on special boxes with these four passages from the Torah, which mention the unity of His Name and the way out of Egypt, to remember the miracles He performed for us. It is also noted that these miracles prove His unity, His strength, and His dominion in the higher and lower worlds. Thus, a person putting on tefillin correctly subordinates the mind and heart to God.
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