The Nefesh Hachaim writes in sha’ar 4: chapter 15 how we
have been commanded from the mouth of Hashem Himself with
an awesome warning, “This Torah scroll must never leave your
mouth and you must toil in it day and night.” [Joshua 1:8]. The
Zohar writes in his introduction [the translated version], “Come
and see just how mighty the power of Torah is, and how it is
loftier than anything…” It is therefore necessary that a person
put all his effort into Torah day and night and not separate
himself from the Torah. This is what it means when it is written,
“And you should toil in it day and night”. If one turns away
from or separates himself from the Torah, it is as if he has cut
himself off from the tree of life.

The Tana Debei Eliyahu, Seder Eliyahu Zuta chapter 13, says
that a person should put great effort into learning the words of
Torah. The words of Torah are compared to bread and water,
teaching us that just as it is impossible for a person to exist
without bread and water so too he cannot exist without Torah,
as the verse says, “This Torah scroll must never leave your
mouth…” We find a similar idea in the medrash Tanchuma in
parshat Ki Tsavo on the verse, “And it will be when you will
surely listen…” We find this also in parshat Ha’azinu and in the
medrash in Tehillim 1.

The pasuk writes [Mishlei 3:18], “It is a tree of life for those
who grasp it…” A person must entrench in his heart and
imagine in his mind that were he drowning in a raging river and
then saw a strong tree in front of him in the river, he would
summon up the strength to seize the tree and cling to it with all
his might. His hands wouldn’t weaken from holding it for even a
moment. His entire life depends on this tree. Who is foolish
enough not to understand that if he is lazy, Hashem forbid, even
for one moment, and his grip weakens, he will surely drown?

So too the holy Torah is called the tree of life. Only when a
person grasps this tree of life with love, and is busy with it,
regularly laboring over it, then he lives the real, upper life,
connected and joined, so to speak, with the One who is eternally
living, blessed be His name, since the Holy One Blessed Be He
and Torah are one.

Further, in chapter 34 of Tana Debei Eliyahy [adapted] he
writes; “From the time of the destruction of our Holy Temple,
and the children were exiled from their father’s table, the Holy
presence of Hashem and His glory wanders – so to speak without

respite. There is nothing left, only this Torah. When
Yisrael, the holy nation, are busy with Torah as they should, they
themselves are like a miniature sanctuary, to prepare for and to
satisfy the Holy Presence, which will rest with them and spreads
its wings over them, so to speak. Through this, Hashem has a
little reprieve, as Chazal say in chapter 141 in Brachot (8a),
“From the day that the Holy Temple was destroyed, the Holy
One Blessed Be He has nothing in this world apart from the four
amot of halacha”.They continue and say, “How do we know that the holy

presence of Hashem rests even on a lone person who sits and studies

Torah? Since the verse says, ‘In every place that I
mention…’” The medrash in Mishlei at the end of chapter 8,
explains the verse “Whoever finds me has found life.” Hashem
says, “Anyone who is situated in the words of Torah, so too I am
situated within him in every place.” The verse therefore says,
“Whoever finds me has found life.”

  1. A sensible person will see and understand his way in
    holiness. He will seize his route, ready to be busy with Torah all
    the days of his life, and to despise evil and to choose that which
    is good for him and for all creations and worlds, to bring
    pleasure to his Former and Creator, blessed be His Name.