Benny clutched his little Torah scroll in one hand and held onto his father with the other. It was Simchas Torah, and they were on the way to shul. “Daddy, I won’t have to use a Chumash today to follow the Torah reading,” he said. “I can follow Parshas V’Zos HaBerachah from my little Torah scroll.”

Benny’s father smiled. “Will you be able to find it?”

Benny nodded. “Of course. It’s easy. It’s the very last parshah of the whole Torah!”

As they walked on, Benny continued thinking about all the singing and dancing in the shul. “Daddy, why do we read the last parshah in the Torah and celebrate Simchas Torah now, instead of at some other time?”

“Well, what other time do you think would be better?” asked Benny’s father.

Shavuos, of course,” answered Benny. “That’s when the Torah was given.”

“That’s a good question, Benny. We celebrate with the Torah on both Simchas Torah and Shavuos, but on each holiday, we do it in a different way. What do you think is the most important thing about Shavuos?”

Benny thought. “Well, that is when HaShem gave us the Torah and when the Jewish people said Na’aseh V’nishma. They promised HaShem to do the mitzvos and to learn the Torah.”

“Exactly!” said his father. “On Shavuos, we concentrate on what is written in the Torah, what we can understand. We are happy to study Torah and to follow what it says. But on Simchas Torah, we are celebrating the Torah itself. When we dance with the Torah, it’s rolled up, tied closed with a gartel and covered with a mantle. This shows our connection to a deeper part of the Torah, the part which we cannot understand, the part which HaShem calls His very self.”

“I never thought of it that way,” said Benny.

“There’s more,” added his father. “Simchas Torah is a day when all Jews really feel ahavas Yisrael. We all feel equal, because we are dancing with a closed Sefer Torah.”

“Oh! I get it,” said Benny. “On Shavuos, we celebrate what is written inside the Torah what we learn when the Sefer Torah is open. Since some people can learn more than others, we don’t feel so equal. But when the Sefer Torah is closed, we’re all the same.”

“And that’s what ahavas Yisrael is all about. ‘A Jew, the Torah, and HaShem are all one.’ ” said his father. “And we are not the only ones who are happy. This holiday is called Simchas Torah, not just because we are happy with the Torah, but because the Torah itself is happy.”

“The Torah is so happy that it wants to dance, but it has no feet to dance by itself. When a Jew dances, holding the Sefer Torah close to his heart, he becomes the feet of the dancing Sefer Torah.”

(Adapted from Likkutei Sichos, Vol. IV, Simchas Torah)