Tefillin on the Go
Tefillin – it’s a big, BIG Mitzvah! But not every Jew has the knowledge or Jewish educational background to appreciate this Mitzvah and dedicate so much time to prayers while wearing Tefillin. And what about the Jewish soldiers going to battle with only a few minutes to do anything not war related, if at all? Would they miss the chance of putting on Tefillin?
Well, although it’s certainly ideal to wear Tefillin during prayers, the good news is that this Mitzvah can be accomplished without the prayers – by merely putting the Tefillin on your hand and head.
Indeed, ever since the miraculous 6-day-war was won in Israel (in 1967), and the Jews once again had control of the Western Wall, a.k.a. Kosel HaMaaravi, a Tefillin-booth was set up there. Tourists from all over the world, soldiers, students, and all Jewish males over Bar Mitzvah were given the opportunity to put on Tefillin. 1… 2… 3… put on the Shel Yad, then the Shel Rosh, say the all-important Shema in whatever language they know best, and it’s the Mitzvah of Tefillin. For many Jews it was their first time ever putting on Tefillin but certainly not their last! As our Sages say, Mitzvah Goreres Mitzvah – one Mitzvah “schleps” (or leads to) another Mitzvah.
This Tefillin booth idea caught on, and now they can be found all over the world, in all shapes and forms… there are even mobile homes “converted” into Tefillin booths, bringing this Mitzvah to Jews wherever they are… college campuses, events or you name it!