Psalm 45

… ride on in the cause of truth and meekness and right; and let your right hand lead you to awesome Torah. (45:5)

I love that the Psalmist suggests that the cause of truth (literally?) goes hand in hand with the quality of meekness. In fact, reading the Psalm a bit creatively, I would turn this into a mathematical formula:

Truth + Meekness = Right (= Justice, Correctness)

Straying just a bit further away from the literal meaning of the Psalm, I would also suggest that approaching Torah will the quality of humility is essential to finding awesome Torah. If you know the truth and approach Torah with the intent of proving that you are right, you might do so, but your Torah will not be awesome. Torah is only earthshatteringly awesome when you approach it with humility, when you say, “I think I know the truth but I am not sure. Let me absorb some Torah and see what it tells me.” It is only with this attitude that you can be surprised by what Torah is telling you.

This is a problem with many of the political right or left – they search sacred texts for verses proving that their position is correct, rather than entering the text with a blank slate, completely open to whatever wisdom presents itself.

This is a variation on the teaching of Rabbi Tzadok in Pirke Avot 4:5, “Do not make [Torah teachings] a crown with which to glorify yourself or a spade with which to dig.”

In other words, don’t use Torah to prove you are right or your positions are correct. Rather, let your mind be open to whatever Torah wants to give you.

One thought on “Psalm 45

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