Clothes Make the Man

Shavua Tov. Today’s Parsha spoke about the clothing of the Kohanim. They were to be worn לכבוד ולתפארת, for honor and for glory. The Kohein Gadol wore eight garments whenever he wanted to. The regular Kohein wore four garments and was only allowed to wear them while he was actually serving in the Temple.

Rabbi Soloveitchik notes that uniforms in our society, endow that person with authority. The policeman, the doctor, the judge, and many others are treated with respect because of their uniform.

The Rav was very clear on this point when he made the following observation. Clothing is an expression not of the intellect of man, but of the dignity of man. The uniform shows that one was selected for this position of authority.

The Torah also made a point that one should not lose his humility because of his authority. The king certainly wore special royal garbs but was reminded to remain humble by having a Torah scroll on his right arm.

The exception to this rule was Moshe Rabbeinu. He ruled for seven days as כהן גדול and did not wear special clothing. He mastered humility. We must always remember that despite the position we are in, we must never lose our humility as well.