Jewish Law

How can a Woman find Happiness in Simchat Torah?



Hi Rabbi, As a girl how do I find joy in Simchat Torah? I don't learn Torah so I don't find happiness in finishing it or starting it and I can't dance or sing, but I want to find meaning in the Chag, what can I do? Thank you, Blimi


To the Questioner, 

Simchat Torah is a day of a siyum (completion) (Orach Chaim 669:1).

While customarily the siyum that is celebrated is the siyum of the Chumash that was read in shul the entire year (see ibid), from a spiritual perspective the day represents the celebration of one's own "siyum" in their worship of Hashem. 

Therefore, it is a time to look back at where you were holding in your connection to Hashem last year at this time, to see how much you have grown since then, and to celebrate in your thoughts when the singing is going on around you, all of the actions that you did for Hashem and for the sake of keeping Torah that were hard for you over the entire last year. Then you will be able to celebrate and be happy for the siyum of last year's milestones for you in your growth of coming closer to Hashem. 

Even if you were not successful at doing many of those acts this past year, it is also an appropriate time to think about what type of acts you can do like that for the upcoming year, and then through the chizuk of the singing around you, accept upon yourself something small in one or two of those areas, 

Once you do that you will feel satisfied, accomplished, and like you received something very meaningful out of the Yom Tov.