The Secret of Unity
"Unity" is the catchword of Israeli politics today. Opponents of Prime Minister Sharons disengagement plan protest that he is dividing the nation. The call from some extremists in the ranks of the protesters for soldiers to disobey orders to evacuate settlers is condemned by government and IDF heads as dividing the nations army.
So everyone wants unity! Lets see what this weeks Torah portion has to say on this subject.
Vayakhel, the title of this portion, means "he assembled them". This was not a gathering of a part of the people for the purpose of protest or of a demonstration against the protesters. This was an assembly of all the people who came to hear their leader Moshe, upon his descent from Heaven, communicate to them the commands of G-d.
Unity without every Jew subservient to Divine guidance is an illusion which becomes a temporary reality when faced by a common danger. Where man is guided only by his own intelligence and interests, the inevitable result is the conflict of interests which produces rival political movements, each claiming to be the champion of unity.
Only a common allegiance to Torah can create a lasting unity to hold Israel together forever.