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Thought for the Day: Olam Haba -- Guaranteed

Some people say it every day, but we all say it at least once a week:
tana d'vei eliyahu: kol hashoneh halachos bechol yom, muvtach lo sh'hu ben olam haba -- It was taught in the yeshiva of Eliyahu (that's right, Elijah the prophet; a prophet doesn't come out of nowhere you know) all who learn halachos every day are guaranteed membership in the world to come.
R' Shlomo Zalman Auerbach, z"tzl, notes with some surprise that the tana is giving an open guarantee for olam haba.  Not an eitza tova (good advice), a guarantee.  Note, by the way, that the word is "halachos"; plural.  Because of this, the vasikin minyan learns two halachos each day; before or after davening, depending on time of year.  (I've heard that other minyan do the same; that is to say, I've heard that there are other minyanim and I assume they do the same.)  Besides the guarantee, the wording is interesting.  It doesn't say "oseh torah u'mitzvos" or even  "oseik ba'torah"; simply "shone halachos" -- review Jewish law.

The key is in the proof text (Chabakuk 3:6):
sh'ne'emar, "halichos olam lo" (the ways/manners of the world are His); al tikra "halichos" ele "halachos" (don't read "ways/manners", rather read "Jewish laws")
That certainly clears things up, eh?  The normal way that people interact with each other really belongs to HaShem, so change the vocalization a bit and say "Jewish law"; which proves that one who learns halacha (sorry, at least two halachos) each day is guaranteed to be a ben olam haba.  Crystal clear.

I heard many years ago that whenever Chazal tell you to read a word differently, they are telling you what the author's underlying intent was and that the word used is to be understood as an explanation of the word Chazal say to read instead.  When Chabakuk says says "halichos olam lo", he really means to say that halacha is much, much more than a list of rules.  Things don't "just happen", things are guided and happen for a purpose.  What is guiding the world?  Halacha.  When you realize that every situation is actually "halacha l'ma'ase" (practical/functioning halacha) and when you review that by regarding everything you learn and experience as halacha, then halacha and halicha merge into one.  There is no learning that is not doing; no doing that is not learning.  At that point you are conducting yourself in HaShem's world as HaShem conducts Himself in your world.

That's a ben olam haba; guaranteed.


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