||Commentary on Perek Shira (with text) and Pirkei Avot.
Perek Shira is a chapter of song and praise to G-d by heavenly and earthly bodies, and by plants and dumb creatures. It is composed of Scriptural verses, one or two for each creature enumerated; and it is divided, according to subjects, into six parts, one for each of the six week-days, though the whole chapter is repeated every day at the morning prayer, except on Sabbath, when the "Shir ha-Yihud" is substituted.
R. Joseph Albo (1380-1444) highly values "Perek Shirah," and explains why the Rabbis asserted that every one who recited it daily would become "a member of the world to come"; he regarded the sayings as wise and excellent, as tending to elevate man's moral conduct: "Who teacheth us from the beasts of the earth, and maketh us wiser from the fowls of heaven" (Job xxxv. 11, Hebr.). R. Johanan said: "If these things were not prescribed in the Torah, we could learn decency from the cat; the ant would preach against robbery, and the dove against incest" ('Er. 100b). Albo quotes the shirah of the ant: "Who giveth food to all flesh: for his mercy endureth for ever" (Ps. cxxxvi. 25). From this, he says, each may learn to be content with his lot, to be industrious and saving, like the ant. The shirah of the dove teaches that "in the clefts of the rocks" (Cant. ii. 14) one may find examples of true love and virtue ("'Ikkarim," iii. 1).
The importance of Perek Shirah in Kabbalah is recognized from the wealth of Kabbalistic commentaries it inspired. From R. Moses b. Joseph di Trani's, who credits King David with the authorship of Perek Shirah in his Bet Elokim, commentary on it which comprises a third part of his Sha'ar ha-'Ikkarim (Venice, 1576). Other commentaries on it are: Mesapperim Tehillot, by R. Hananiah Jaghel of Moncilisi; Sifte Renanot, by his son R. Gamaliel of Norzi (Mantua, 1661); Siah Yizhak and Sha'ar Shimeon, by the brothers R. Isaac and Simeon b. Meïr (Venice, 1664); Sedeh Bokim, by R. Joseph Darshan of Posen (Frankfort-on-the-Main, 1679); Sha'ar ha-Shamayim, by R. Isaiah Hurwitz (Amsterdam, 1717); Pi Eliyahu, by R. Elijah Deutsch, who credits Perek Shirah to David and Solomon (Altona, 1735); Avodat Mikdash, by R. Menahem de Lonzano (Leghorn, 1767); Likkute Amarim, by R. Abraham ben Israel of Brody (Zolkiev, 1802); Kenaf Renanim, by R. Enoch Zundel Luria (Krotoschin, 1842); Tuv Ta'am, by R. S. J. Abramowitsch (Zhitomir, 1875).