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Friday, May 10

The Weekly Shtikle - Bemidbar

In the beginning of this week's parsha, at the beginning of the second month of the second year since yetzias Mitzrayim, B'nei Yisrael are split into their respective camps. R' Yaakov Kaminetzky, in Emes l'Yaakov, asks that since these formations were a way of organizing the traveling and resting formations, why did it take an entire year for these formations to be actualized? He answers that the concept of dividing B'nei Yisrael into camps is potentially one that could lead to division amongst K'lal Yisrael. Each tribe had their own colours, their own symbols and their own ideals. This could theoretically pose a great threat to the "achdus," the cohesive togetherness that is such an integral component to the survival of our nation.

The only factor that could ensure that this division does not become a reality is the presence of the mishkan in the center of the camp. With the mishkan in the middle, everyone's principal central focus was the mishkan  It established a certain degree of centrality in the realm of serving HaShem, as if everyone davened in the same shul, so to speak. No one had "that shul that they don't go to." This being so, the individuality and uniqueness presented by the division into camps was able to take a secondary role to the unity created by the mishkan  Thus, B'nei Yisroel could not be divided into camps until the building of the mishkan which only culminated a month before in the beginning of Nisan.

The importance of oneness and common focus is, of course, an important theme to bear in mind as we approach Shavuos, celebrating when we stood together "k'ish echad b'leiv echad" to receive the Torah.

Have a good Shabbos.

Eliezer Bulka

Shtikle Blog Weekly Roundup:
Al Pi Cheshbon: Tens and Ones by Ari Brodsky
Al Pi Cheshbon: Rounded Numbers
Al Pi Cheshbon: Pidyon HaBen Probability
AstroTorah: Navigating 40 Years in the Wilderness by the Northern Stars by R' Ari Storch
Dikdukian: Be or Ba?
Dikdukian: Discussions on Bemidbar by Eliyahu Levin

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