It is told that an ordinary person was once observed especially rejoicing on Simchat Torah. He was asked: “Why are you rejoicing on Simchat Torah? Did you learn a lot of Torah during the year?”

He answered, “When my brother marries off his daughter, should I not participate in his rejoicing?”

This is the answer of the simple person, according to the best of his knowledge. However, in all truth, Simchat Torah is not “a brother’s wedding,” someone else’s rejoicing, but rather every Jew’s personal rejoicing. It is not derived from the wisdom of the Torah, in which there is a distinction between one Jew and another; the rejoicing stems from the essence of the Torah, which is relevant to every Jew equally.

If we were celebrating Simchat Torah through learning it, the distinction between a Torah scholar and a simple person would be underscored; however, by dancing together-the greatest of the great and the simplest of the simple are equal.

Moreover, for the simple person the rejoicing is purer than for the Torah scholar, for it is likely that the Torah scholar’s rejoicing is “adulterated by” joy from understanding the Torah, which is not the case with the simple person.

Further, if we were rejoicing with the Torah by learning and analysis, the rejoicing would be limited according to the degree of the understanding; however, when we rejoice with the essence of the Torah, the rejoicing knows no limit.

(Sichat Leil Simchat Torah 5722)