Mezuzah Scrolls (Parchments)

Chazal teaches that a mezuzah has the unique characteristic of protecting the residents of the house on which it is dependent – whether the residents are inside or outside the home. The mezuzah can be compared to a Shield that protects us from the dangers that surround us in our lives. When passing through a door in which a mezuzah was affixed, we peek at it and touch it. Some people and their palms kiss. This serves as a reminder during the day that G‑d is always with us, inside or outside our houses. God assures that anyone who strictly observes the mezuzah will lead to a more productive life, like their offspring, as the Deuteronomy says, “Then you shall date your days and the days of your children.” You should hang a mezuzah on pretty much every door that belongs to you. Exceptions are doors leading to baths and closets that are smaller. These words are handwritten by a professional scribe who’s trained in the various laws involved with composing a mezuzah, including the requirement that it be composed with specific intention and that the words be composed in order. The cosmetic instance containing the mezuzah scroll is just that: a small container. What is significant is the scroll, upon the first two segments of the Shema Israel, are handwritten, Starting with the immortal words “Hear o Israel, the Lord is our God, the Lord is One.” These choices both comprise God’s teaching to attach the mezuzah: “You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” On the other side of the scroll, the author writes between the titles of God: “Shaddai.” The three letters of the name make initials of the Hebrew words meaning “keeper of the doors of Israel.” Since this description of God begins with the letter Shin, mezuzah cases are usually decorated with this letter. It is customary to make mezuzahs every year, before the holidays. Also if the mezuzah was purchased from a legitimate origin and previously detected to be absolutely kosher, there is always room for human mistake, and new holes and other problems can develop with age. Naturally, an expert scribe must do this checking. Each mezuzah should be attached at the right side of each entrance, in the upper third of the opening. The mezuzah should be on the top right side, sloping so that the mezuzah head faces inward toward the room.

The mezuzah must be checked once a year

The Lubavitcher Rebbe would often beg people who faced health difficulties or other matters to receive their mezuzahs, to make sure that each scroll was in good condition and correctly located on each doorpost. The Talmud teaches that while most of the kings sit on their faces while their watchmen protect them from the Almighty, His protection stations (as expressed in the mezuzah) outside, protect His loved ones. If you need assistance obtaining a new mezuzah or with your present ones assessed, the last Lubavitcher rabbi will be delighted to help you. Every letter in the mezuzah must be correctly formed. A crack at any omission or the parchment can invalidate the scroll. It is essential that it be bought from a retailer or a scribe. Mezuzah scrolls are wrapped up and affixed to the doorposts of Jewish homes, designating the house as Jewish and reminding those who reside thereof the link to G‑d and their heritage. Judaism isn’t confined to synagogues. We work hard inside familiarity and the comfort of our own houses for spirituality. The mezuzah on the doorpost reminds people who walk through that G‑dly life and Torah accompany them wherever they go.

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