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Recognizing a Community: Parashat Pekudei (Exodus 38:21-40:38)

Parashat Pekudei (Exodus 38:21-40:38)

URL: http://www.jewishjournal.com/torah_portion/article/recognizing_a_community_parashat_pekudei_exodus_3821-4038_20110301

When looking for biblical themes on the importance of community, one needs look no further than those portions at the end of Exodus that deal with the construction of the mishkan (Tabernacle). This special structure represents the collective spiritual power of the Jewish people, which is far greater than the sum of the individual parts. Separately, the individual Jew does not have enough spiritual energy to bring the Divine Presence, the Shekhinah, into this world. But when the Jewish people join in the construction of a communal edifice, a structure that represents their collective worship and spiritual energy, the Shekhinah eagerly embeds Itself within the people.

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