By Rabbi Yerachmiel Shapiro
I’ve always wondered why the first “request” blessing in the Amidah meditation is the prayer asking Hashem for wisdom. There are so many things we could ask for, why are wisdom and insight the first things we ask for every time we pray?
David Kowarski, one of my most interesting congregants, often sends me texts letting me know about new technological innovations that will help Israel and humanity. As I was looking at his text today about some kind of revolutionary delivery drone, it dawned on me – scientific innovation and technological advancement are some of the purest reflections of Godliness in the world. They reflect the highest sefirot of Godly revelation – Chochma, Binah, and Daas. Hashem is All-Knowing and the source of all wisdom.
The first request we make of Hashem each day is to grant us the gift of Godliness which is most apparent in wisdom – “Chanienu M’Itcha chochma, Grant us from YOURSELF wisdom.” It could have left out the words “from YOURSELF” but our wisdom, insight, and discernment are where God flows into us.