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Tenth of Tevet: Unity Print E-mail
Written by Machberes Avodas Hashem   

destructionTry to imagine the oppressive fear that must have ripped through our ancestors as they observed the Babylonians laying siege around the walls of Jerusalem. They all began to fight

for their own survival and in many ways fought each other in the process. We read of the heart-wrenching accounts of those so famished that they lost their last shred of humanity.

Yet, on some level, when a city is under siege, the victims share a common destiny.
Social ranks don't matter anymore, political or religious differences become irrelevant. People who might have had little if anything in common are joined in their plight. It is them, inside those walls, against the rest of the world.

Often, those who suffer from a similar pain, whether an illness or any other kind of tragedy, will gravitate towards each other and share a very intense bond. "Misery loves company".

Jews over centuries of persecution have often been able to identify with each other through their collective suffering. When we feel under siege, we feel connected.

But there is something so much more precious that we have in common. We share a reality that goes beyond the agonies of our exiles. We share the hope that one day, we will return to our land; one day, God's Glory and the glory of Israel will be restored. This spark is what we must look for; it transcends the boundaries we erect between us.

In the Blessing of Peace, we say: "Bless us, our Father, all of us as one with the light of Your countenance". 

ToolsApplication:
During the days that precede the Tenth of Tevet, let us try to connect with others, not for the darkness that we share, but for the light that unites us and that shines on us when we are 'as one'.

May this light bring us to the day when "Jerusalem will be settled beyond its walls...and I will be for it -the word of God- a wall of fire all around and for glory will I be in its midst" (Zecharya 2:8-9).

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