What is it about Rabbi Akiva that caused him to be venerated in a manner that no one else was? His learning certainly played a large role, as he was known for both his methodological categorizations and his endless creativity. But the love of Rabbi Akiva extends beyond his scholarly achievements. It was his outlook on life, which was the driving force behind his incredible life story, that established him as not only a brilliant scholar, but as a role model for all Jews.
Rabbi Jonathan Duker, The Spirits Behind the Law: The Talmudic Scholars (Jerusalem & New York: Urim Publications, 2007), 14.