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Home » B'Har

B’har: Unity in Action

Submitted by on May 7, 2006 – 3:55 amNo Comment | 2,462 views

 Shemitah and Sinai

Our Parsha outlines the laws of shemitah, agricultural sabbatical. “Six years you shall sow your crop and on the seventh the field shall lie fallow.” During the seventh year all produce that grows spontaneously must be equally shared among all people. There may be no private ownership of fields during shemitah.

The Torah informs us that this law was given to Moshe at Mt. Sinai. This point was specified to assure us that all Torah laws were taught to Moshe at Sinai. Though the recording of these laws are scattered throughout the entire Torah they, like the laws of shemitah, were all taught to Moses on Mt. Sinai.
That the Torah chose to teach this point, which relates to the entire Torah, while in discussion of the shemitah laws implies a link between Sinai and shemitah

Love and Unity

When our ancestors gathered at Sinai they stood together, as one man with one heart. For reasons beyond the scope of this essay, this demonstration of unity convinced G-d that Jews were worthy of the Torah.
Shemitah poses the ultimate challenge to our unity. G-s prohibits the sowing of our crop unity - innerstreamand instructs us to trust that he will provide for the entire year. He further instructs us not to hoard the little that does grow in the field, but to share it equally with others. That is a difficult challenge. I don’t know what I will eat tomorrow, yet I am asked to give away the extra piece of bread I have today!
Fulfilling this Mitzvah calls for the greatest exercise of Jewish unity, the greatest manifestation of Jewish love.
Sinai symbolizes Jews standing together as one man with one heart. Shemitah represents the practical application of that love in concrete action.

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