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We Have a Dream

חלום יעקב
ציור: אהובה קליין


The speech considered to be the best one in the 20th century is called "I have a dream". Martin Luther King spoke about equality in the United States. A dream starts processes, changes reality, causes revolutions. One needs a vision in order to act in reality. In the foundation of our existence too, there is a dream. In this week's Portion, before Yaacov starts the journey of his life, the famous dream of Sulam Yaacov (Jacob's Ladder) appears. Angels go up and down, Yaacov hears great news and promises about a glorious future, and through the influence of this dream he becomes the father of the 12 tribes, and that family turns into a Nation.

The commentators of this Portion explain what was so powerful about this dream, which has turned into a meaningful symbol in the world culture as well. Up until that dream, everyone thought that reality was uni-dimensional, that there was the horizontal dimension alone: what you saw in front of your eyes and that's it. The dream reveals to us that there is yet another dimension: a vertical one, a spiritual, hidden, top-down one, which we do not see. It is said about the ladder that "It is placed on the earth, but its head reaches to the heavens". That is, there is a connection between the heavens and the earth, between the spiritual and the material, and this dream is from now on placed at the basis of the path of the People of Israel. Shabbat Shalom.


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