15620 W. 10 Mile Rd., Southfield,MI 48075 Detroit Zmanim

Hashkafa shiur summary
Emunah B’Seichel

Part 2

by Rav Simcha Klein

  • The following are examples of statements and conversations that can be used to convey emunah b’seichel to young children1:
  • Inform the child from an early age2 that Hashem is the creator of the the world and everything inside of it, including you and I. Tell them it is Hashem who gives us the strength to walk, talk, and live, and that He is the source of all the good in our lives3.
  • Illustrate this reality by asking them4: “Who causes it to rain5 and snow? Who makes children grow tall? How do seeds turn into plants? Who makes us breath?” Have them verbalize6 that the answer is Hashem.
  • Demonstrate the greatness7 of Hashem by pointing out the vastness of the sky, the immenseness of the sun, moon, and stars, the magnificence of all the trees, flowers and plant life, and remind them that Hashem created it all8.
  • Call9 attention to the intangible existence of a Life Force and proclaim that it can only be created by Hashem10.
  • Tell them that that even in today’s technologically advanced era, even if all the scientists in the world pooled their individual knowledge, they still would not be able to make a dead insect come alive again, let alone create a living creature from the beginning.11
  • Point out the purpose and design inherent in all facets of nature12.
  • When a child asks where Hashem can be found, answer He is everywhere13 but we can’t see, hear, or feel Him14.
  • When a child ponders about the nature of Hashem, always focus on explaining what Hashem is not – He is not a person, He does not have any type of body, He is not a malach, He cannot be seen or touched, etc.
  • Remark that Hashem is so great that He does not need eyes to see and ears to hear15.
  • Regarding the exact nature of Hashem, explain to the child that no one, even malachim, truly know and understand what Hashem is16, and that all we do know is that He exists, He loves us, and He is in charge of the entire world17.
  • When a child questions if tragedies and hardships are also the work of Hashem, explain that everything Hashem does is ultimately for our good even if we don’t understand how and why18. Elaborate that Hashem has secret reasons for everything he does and even adults are not always smart enough to understand his ways19.
  • Always encourage and validate questions on this topic. In the event you don’t know the answers never be afraid to say “I don’t know”20.
  • A great time to convey emunah to young children is when they are lying in bed before they go to sleep. At that time, children are calm and receptive, and are even open to sensitive conversations.


1. It is important to remember that instilling emunah in children’s hearts and minds is an accumulative process that lasts throughout the childhood years.
2. See Igros Moshe (Y.D. 3:76) who states that as soon as children are old enough to be cognizant of their unique relationship with their parents, which can even be prior to their ability to speak, they should be informed that Hashem is the Creator and Sustainer of the world and all its inhabitants.
3. See Igros Moshe (Y.D. 3:76) at length on how vital it is that children from an early age should perceive Hashem as the epitome of benevolence, because children who are cognizant of Hashem in such a way will be more enthusiastic about heeding and fulfilling Hashem’s will when they grow up.
4. Based on Rav Shlomo Volbe Z”L (Zireya U’Binyan B’Chinuch p. 39)
5. Rav Yaakov Kamanetsky Z”L would point to the unpredictability of rainfall as a means to discern Hashem’s authority over nature.
6. Articulation helps solidify a concept in a child’s mind. Dovid HaMelech expressed this concept saying “He’emanti Ki Adaber” (Tehillim 116:10). See also Yesod Havodah (Letter 17).
7. It is extremely important for parents to constantly point out to thier children the wonders of nature and connect it to Hashem. The book Designer World by R’ Avroham Katz of Gateshead can be a very useful resource on this topic. A good time to discuss niflos haboreh with children may be at the Shabbos seudah.
8. Yeshaya HaNavi used this method as it says (ישעיה מ,כו) שְׂאוּ מָרוֹם עֵינֵיכֶם וּרְאוּ מִי בָרָא אֵלֶּה -. See also Rabeinu Yonah (end of 4th perek of Berachos) who elaborates on the idea that Hashem’s presence is revealed in this world via the wonders of nature.
9. This may be more appropriate for older children.
10. Tzemach Tzedek (Derech Mitsvosecha, Yisro, Hamanas Elykus) posits that the very existence of a Life Force is indicative of Hashem’s being.
11. This assertion was made by the Medrash (Beraishis Rabbah 39). These words of the Medrash were true then in the ancient world, and are still true thousands of years later in our advanced modern era.
12. The writings and books of Rav Avigdor Miller Z”L are a precious resource on this topic. See also Chayei Olam (by the Steipler Gaon Z”L) who details at length the intricate design and precision evident in the various parts of the human body.
13. See Zireya U’Binyan BaChinuch (p. 39) why in today’s day and age it is not a good idea to say Hashem is in the sky. He also advises not to say “Hashem is in with us in the room” for this can frighten a child when he is alone.
14. When a child questions why Hashem can’t be seen, explain that seeing Hashem would simply be too overwhelming.
15. Rav Shimshon Pinkus (Shaarei Emunah) explains that otherwise the child will perceive the fact that he has no eyes and ears as a lack on Hashem’s part. The same is true regarding all human faculties in contrast to Hashem.
16. See Rambam (Yesodei HaTorah 2:8).
17. When children question who made Hashem, reply that “Hashem always was”.
18. As it says – .הצור תמים פעלו כי כל דרכיו משפט (דברים לב,ד)
19. As it says – .כי גבהו שמים מארץ כן גבהו דרכי מדרכיכם ומחשבותי ממחשבותיכם (ישעיה נה,ט)
20. Rav Akiva Eiger Z”L (Gilyon HaShas on Berachos 25b) compiled a list of tens of times that Rashi states simply – “I don’t know” in his commentary.