Torah study is not like any other mitzvah.
I am within the subject and the subject is included within me.
The essence of other mitzvot is that I take something that is profane, I add something to it, and I thereby convert it into something holy.
In Divine worship (prayer) I do nothing of the sort.
When I offer up something, I do in a sense hallow it by sacrificing it, but I am not adding anything to it.
I am simply burning up the reality of its existence.
That is, I am not making it higher than it was; I am annihilating it.
As for Torah, I do not raise the Torah that I study nor can I make it less than it is.
In fact, it is only when I study (or obey) Torah that I raise my own soul.
–Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz
From In the Beginning by Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz