On pages 6-8, Rav Miller notes an idea he said before, and that's that everything we do is being recorded and will appear later.
There's an idea of a Torah that will be written by Eliyahu Hanavi, and our deeds will have a place there. And no, it doesn't contradict the idea of not adding or subtracting to the Chumash now.
It's a deliciously complex idea, so it's best to read it in the rav's own words (again, pages 6-8).
On pages 8-9, Rav Miller details a scientific project I never heard of: to collect all the dissipated sound that has ever existed and bring it back together.
"...we would be able to hear today what was said thousands of years ago," he says.
A very intriguing idea, indeed.
He mentions the heart-aching fact that tremendous Torah existed in the not-so-distant past, but no way to record it.
The rav emphasized that the rabbanim of the pre-WWII Slabodka yeshivah gave such well-formed shiurim, an entire lecture flowed forth like gold from their lips—but no one ever recorded them.
Such a loss!
But here, Rav Miller reassures us we'll be able to hear them again—and much more than that!
- How many of us yearn to hear the sound of Sara Imeinu's voice and know exactly what she said to the women she converted, and how she said it?
- Don't we wish so much to hear a shiur by Rebbi Akiva or a nevuah from any of the Nevi'im?
- And wouldn't we love to hear how David Hamelech sang his own Tehillim?
- Or the heart-soaring music of the Levi'im in the Beit Hamikdash?
So much beautiful sound missing!
Yet we certainly will hear it again.
Stuff that Makes You Think
ALL our deeds.
Like this (page 11, emphasis mine):
And I must tell you that all this is very big fun!
That’s part of the great simcha of Olam Habo.
It’s a remarkable happiness to study and analyze the events of human history with all the secrets revealed and thoroughly understood.
But it’s only a happiness for the spectators – it’s not always a time of joy for those who were the actors.
Because when Reuven – Reuven is there, he’s among the audience – when finally the picture of Reuven is flashed on the screen, he’s not so happy with himself.
Everybody, all the tzaddikim, Nevi’im, Tana’im, Amora’im, the Rishonim and Achronim, and everyone who came after them, are sitting and studying the story of Yosef being saved:
And Reuven said to them, “Don’t shed his blood. Let’s throw him into a pit instead,” and when Reuven hears those words he puts his head into his hands and he thinks to himself:
“Ach! What poor words these are! Couldn’t I have written into the scenario something more noble than that? Why didn’t I realize when I had the opportunity what was really taking place? I wish I could have another chance!”
But there are no take-twos in the next world.
What’s written down has been recorded forever and it’s going to play in Olam Habo forever.
From page 13 onward, Rav Miller fleshes out what exactly the idea of being recorded means for us and offers practical examples of how to use this idea for self-improvement.
One very big plus about this is it takes a person's natural desire for kavod and shows him or her how to use it in a holy way.
Especially with all the rampant narcissism in our times, a narcissist could take this idea alone & make a lot of soul-progress.
Don't forget to check out the Practical Tip on page 18.
There is also a compelling remembrance of a very special Jew named Tuvia Baruch Chester by his daughter on page 19.
And...you can find Rav Miller's personal thoughts on Chanukah gifts on the last page. It's geared toward Jews who live among all the December activity of the Western world, but still worth reading no matter where you live.