re: #19 Bob Levin
Bob, if you feel that your technique of analyzing the text by jumping into it increases your fear of Heaven and your performance of the commndments (I am assuming that you are Jewish), I say, “all the more power to you.”
If it is just for the intelectual experience, I think that you are missing the point. Like the Ramban said, “When you arise from your learning reflect carefully on what you have studied, in order to see what in it that you can be put into practice.”
I am not holding the Torah at arms length. I am embracing it entirely. The learning has to enter the heart as you said, but from there it has to enter the rest of the body, i.e. observance of the commandments.