Friday, February 22, 2013

United We Stand, Divided We Probably Fall

Where did the ideas for teams logos, colors or emblems come from? Why of course, like most other things we have today, it came from the Torah. In this parsha there are descriptions of the precious and semiprecious stones used in the Choshen Mishpat or Breastplate of Judgement. here is an example from a auction house, clicking on the picture will take you to the auction website.
Detail 1

Each stone was to represent one of the 12 sons of Yaakov and as we know them the 12 tribes of Israel. As can be seen in 28:15-29 some of which is below:
15. You shall make a choshen of judgment, the work of a master weaver. You shall make it like the work of the ephod; of gold, blue, purple, and crimson wool, and twisted fine linen shall you make it. טו. וְעָשִׂיתָ חשֶׁן מִשְׁפָּט מַעֲשֵׂה חשֵׁב כְּמַעֲשֵׂה אֵפֹד תַּעֲשֶׂנּוּ זָהָב תְּכֵלֶת וְאַרְגָּמָן וְתוֹלַעַת שָׁנִי וְשֵׁשׁ מָשְׁזָר תַּעֲשֶׂה אֹתוֹ:
16. It shall be square [and] doubled; its length one span and its width one span. טז. רָבוּעַ יִהְיֶה כָּפוּל זֶרֶת אָרְכּוֹ וְזֶרֶת רָחְבּוֹ:
17. And you shall fill into it stone fillings, four rows of stones. One row: odem, pitdah, and bareketh; thus shall the one row be. יז. וּמִלֵּאתָ בוֹ מִלֻּאַת אֶבֶן אַרְבָּעָה טוּרִים אָבֶן טוּר אֹדֶם פִּטְדָה וּבָרֶקֶת הַטּוּר הָאֶחָד:
18. The second row: nofech, sappir, and yahalom. יח. וְהַטּוּר הַשֵּׁנִי נֹפֶךְ סַפִּיר וְיָהֲלֹם:
19. The third row: leshem, shevo, and achlamah. יט. וְהַטּוּר הַשְּׁלִישִׁי לֶשֶׁם שְׁבוֹ וְאַחְלָמָה:
20. And the fourth row: tarshish, shoham, and yashpheh; they shall be set in gold in their fillings. כ. וְהַטּוּר הָרְבִיעִי תַּרְשִׁישׁ וְשֹׁהַם וְיָשְׁפֵה מְשֻׁבָּצִים זָהָב יִהְיוּ בְּמִלּוּאֹתָם:
21. And the stones shall be for the names of the sons of Israel twelve, corresponding to their names; [similar to] the engravings of a seal, every one according to his name shall they be, for the twelve tribes. כא. וְהָאֲבָנִים תִּהְיֶיןָ עַל שְׁמֹת בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל שְׁתֵּים עֶשְׂרֵה עַל שְׁמֹתָם פִּתּוּחֵי חוֹתָם אִישׁ עַל שְׁמוֹ תִּהְיֶיןָ לִשְׁנֵי עָשָׂר שָׁבֶט:


Once again, these are just found in the desert? No, they were given by the Egyptians to the children of Israel when Israel left as compensation for the 210 years of slavery. And you can imagine, among 2 million plus people, quite a few gem stones existed.

But why do it this way? Could God not ask everyone to inscribe a name on the gold plate? Why the colors/stones? Because in each son/tribe there existed their own brilliance and ability. Individually the tribes were uniquely built to sustain themselves but together they formed a stronger union than any nation that existed. When Israel is dispersed and unable to relate to each other as brothers, they are weaker and more susceptible to mishaps. However when everyone is together and acts as one, on one page then there is nothing which can stop them.

This was the message which Hashem tried to give to Israel and a reason why Moshe is not mentioned in this parsha. Because he knew the day would come when there would not be harmony among the tribes.

I never believed color war was useful at camp. It was always 2 sides and rarely were there ever mixed flags or color schemes, it was always us vs. them. Often times when the office has a plan or is divided into sub groups the focus, the company, is lost on the individual groups who become enamored with themselves as the one, or the leader. 

We are all part of a greater good, if we believe it and work to it, then good things will come to all of us.

Happy Purim everyone.
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Parsha Tetzaveh in the book of Shemot Exodus 27:20 - 30:10
It is said that the Torah or Bible could be interpreted in over 70 ways. More likely these days 100's of ways. In light of this idea, I am writing some posts that bring a business sense to what we can learn on a weekly basis. Enjoy, Shabbat Shalom