This week’s Torah reading begins Vihayah eikev tishmayun, “And it shall come to pass after you heed,” and continues enumerating generous Divine blessings which the Jews will receive for their observance of the Torah and its mitzvos.

Our Sages note that the word eikev also means “heel,” and explain that this is a reference to mitzvos which a person “tramples with his heel,” i.e., those mitzvos which are not obviously important, but rather are inconspicuously embedded into the fabric of our lives. Keeping these mitzvos warrants G‑d’s bountiful blessings.

When a person observes mitzvos that are obviously important, his commitment is not necessarily that internalized. The importance of the mitzvos does not allow him to ignore them. From the outset, he accepts it as a given that he will observe these precepts. As such, his observance is not that involving an undertaking for him. He is doing what he is expected to do.

When, however, a person observes mitzvos that can be “trampled with our heels,” he shows an extra measure of devotion. By nature, these mitzvos would be ignored; there is no natural tendency pushing him to observe them. Their observance requires him to summon up an extra measure of commitment that enables him to go beyond his natural inclination. Making this additional effort evokes an extra measure of Divine favor and brings the manifold blessings the Torah mentions.