Respect for the Torah and for Torah Books

  1. A person who shows respect for the Torah will be honored
    by others. If a person desecrates the Torah, his body will be desecrated by
    others (Avos 84:47). Rashi explains that this pertains to sifrei Torah: a
    person who shows respect for the Torah does not place it on a chair or a
    bench, but in a holy place.

  2. A person is required to show respect for Torah books.
    They should not be left around in a way that suggests that they were treated
    as though they were not holy. He should also be careful not to put them in a
    place from which they might fall or which suggests that they were not
    treated with respect.

  3. The Chazon Ish writes that a person who puts a
    Torah book in a place from which it might fall and be damaged causes damages
    for which he must answer to G-d. And we should also consider the possibility
    that it violates the prohibition of destroying the things of G-d as we are
    required to destroy the cult objects of idolatry. Even a person who causes
    such damage indirectly violates a rabbinic precept.

  4. A person who sees a Torah book in a place where it could
    be damaged must remove it to a safe place. In doing this he is returning a
    lost object. Similarly, if he sees a book in the hands of a child who does
    not know how to treat it properly, he should take it and put in a safe
    place. If that child is his son, the commandment to educate him requires him
    to prevent him from violating the commandment which forbids treating books
    disrespectfully or damaging them.

  5. Piles of Torah books that are left on tables and places
    where they might be damaged bear witness to a lack of concern and a lack of
    respect for Torah books. It is a terrible chilul Hashem.

  6. Torah books should be taken from their place and put down
    gently and respectfully, certainly not by throwing them.

  7. A person should be careful not to put down a Torah book
    face down, or to put in on a shelf upside down. If a person finds a book
    face down he should turn it face u p. If he finds it upside down, he should
    take it out and put it back right side up.

  8. If a liquid falls on a garment and on a Torah book at the
    same time, the Torah book should be dried off first.

  9. Torah books that are in a bag should be removed by
    lifting them out of the back, not by shaking the bag so that they fall out
    of it.

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