Let My People Know

"A dance drama of cosmic dimensions"

A pragmatic examination of the way of life that results from obedience to the Torah shows that in the long run, besides offering considerable freedom in almost every area of endeavor, such obedience lends to every act the quality of ritual and makes it seem a direct link between man and his Maker. 

This is true irrespective of the nature of the action, whether it be ceremonial or spontaneous, related to God or to people, internal or external. 

For the process of an ever deeper identification with Torah seems to have the effect of intensifying the manner in which one carries out instructions otherwise quite vague and general, even to the point that the way one walks or stands, the gestures of one's hands or face, the tones of one's speech, and so on are visibly modified. 

A unified pattern of life, in which act is integrated with thought and speech, music–so to speak–integrated with the maker of music, is thus eventually created. 

The result is something like a dance drama of cosmic dimensions in which man moves on all levels of existence, in an unbroken stylization of action. 

It is not to be wondered at, therefore, that. external forms of artistic expression were, if not absolutely prohibited, at least severely restricted.

Mere aesthetic forms can only be partial and inadequate as compared with the great artistic creation of the whole way of life of a Jew living according to the Torah. 

–Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz

From The Thirteen Petalled Rose by Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz