Tuesday, May 14, 2013

As One

"כאיש אחד בלב אחד"
“Like one man, as one heart”
With those words chazal describe the incredible unity that was demonstrated by the Jewish nation at Har Sinai. The Shem MiShmuel offers an insight into this famous analogy which will help us actualize our feelings of unity.
The Jewish people are also considered to be represented by the letters of the Torah. The Zohar teaches us that there are 600,000 letters in the Torah parallel to the number of Jews who were present at Har Sinai. If the letters in the Torah are spaced too far apart – they are unable to be read as one and the Torah is passul. However, if they are mashed together, they are equally illegible. The balance is to have the letters individually defined, yet read as one.
Similarly, we are described as being one body. If our limbs were separated from each other we would surely perish, but to facilitate proper health our body’s functions must be clearly defined – with one limb yielding to another. The arm will not perform the task of the leg and so on.
It is with this analogy that chazal describe our unity. We aren’t all identical, nor do we all serve the same purpose. Yet, in our differences, we create a harmonious whole.
As a Jew, I love my fellow Jews both because of our similarity (as we are all part of one whole) and our diversity, which allows us to create, together, a rich and textured canvas.
Gut Yom Tov !