Without a crowd

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Marriage proposals, birthdays, wedding anniversaries -- everything goes up on social media. It's nice and makes us happy to share with everyone, but in this week's Torah portion a fundamental principle appears regarding private versus public matters:

When we hear "ma'mad har sinai" (revelation on Mount Sinai) we imagine hundreds of thousands standing and receiving the Ten Commandments during a magnificently impressive event. But this revelation led to the sin of the golden calf, and when Moshe Rabbeinu saw it he smashed the tablets. After forgiveness and absolution, the giving of the second tablets took place. This time was completely different. G-d says to Moses: "And in the morning you shall ascend Mount Sinai and stand before Me there on the top of the mountain. No one shall ascend with you, neither shall anyone be seen anywhere on the mountain, neither shall the sheep and the cattle graze facing that mountain." 

This time there is no crowd, this time it's only G-d and you. And this time is a success. Thousands of years later, we continue the second giving of the Torah, and not the first. Rashi comments as follows: "There is nothing better than modesty." During an era in which if you didn't post it, you didn't do it, this week's Torah portion reminds us that sometimes if you didn't post it, you did more - you did something eternal.

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