Love of Torah, leads to prishus - a disinterest, even a negation of materialism. There is a well known statement by the Rosh Yeshiva, Rav Aharon Kotler zt'l - (quoted in his son Rav Schneur’s introduction to Mishnas Rav Aharon, Vol. I) that "The constant pursuit of physical pleasure in which people are so involved is actually an attempt to dispel the sadness caused by their physical side".

A person is essentially spiritual. He - his Neshomo (soul) - yearns to come close to his Creator; to bask in His light. This is only possible through Torah and Mitzvos. Lacking that, he feels a gnawing dissatisfaction -he feels unfulfilled. So he looks for what he imagines will satisfy him - physical pleasure. It doesn’t satisfy him however, certainly not for very long. It is not what his Neshomo needed in the first place. On the contrary, overindulgence is counterproductive, distancing him from his creator and thereby leading to more dissatisfaction (see Mishnas Rav Aharon vol. I Maamar (talk) entitled “Kdoshim Tihyu – Prushim Tihyu”).

If however a person understands his purpose in life and lives accordingly, if he is involved in Torah and Mitzvohs and develops a taste and love for them, then he will find fulfillment in that very involvement and won’t need or even desire more than the basic necessities of life. The greater his Ahavoh V’cheshkas Hatorah (love and joy in Torah study and pursuits) will be, the less will be his need for material possessions.

Elsewhere we speak of the Rosh Yeshiva’s legendary Ahavas Torah. It was virtually without a limit! Similarly, he had a great Simcha in all aspects of Avodas Hashem, once exclaiming “what greater pleasure can there be than saying Borchu, than answering “Omein Yehei Shmei Rabbah” Vi Es Darf Tzu Zein - the way it should really be said” (Heard from Rav Shmuel Feivelson). It would then follow that he would have a total lack of interest in material possessions. This was in fact very much the case...

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