The power of love

יעקב ורחל על הבאר
ציור: יואל וקסברגר, מלכות וקסברגר
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Translation by Yehoshua Siskin

The people around us influence us, for better or for worse. In this week's Torah portion we learn how true this is from Yaakov's first encounter with Rachel. A gigantic rock covers a well but what happens when Yaakov first catches a glimpse of Rachel? "Jacob drew near and rolled the rock off the mouth of the well." The gigantic rock is easily moved. The powerful encounter with Rachel virtually nullifies gravitational force itself.

Afterwards Yaakov works seven years in order to earn the privilege of marrying Rachel and this period is described beautifully in these words: "And Jacob worked for Rachel seven years, but they appeared to him like a few days because of his love for her."

Once again it becomes clear how much the spiritual dimension influences our experience of reality: Seven years are transformed into a few days. If previously gravitational force was all but nullified, now the concept of time loses its meaning.

The connection between Yaakov and Rachel reminds us of the power of love, the transformative potential of human relationships. There are those who clip our wings and others who simply give us wings so we can fly.

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