Love of the Land

Love of the Land - By Any Other Name

The Color of HeavenArtscroll
Love of the Land
Selections from classical Torah sources
which express the special relationship between
the People of Israel and Eretz Yisrael

BY ANY OTHER NAME

Mount Hermon, "the Israeli Alps," which lies on Israel's border with the Amorites and the Tzidonites, is called by several other names in the Torah: Siryon, Senir, and Sion. These names were given to it by these neighboring nations: The Tzidonites called it Siryon, and the Amorites called it Senir. (Devarim 3:9)

The Torah relates this to show how beloved Eretz Yisrael was even to the other nations. The names Siryon and Senir were originally names of mountains within the borders of the Land of Israel. The nations loved Eretz Yisrael so much that when they built cities on Mount Hermon, they graced those cities with names of mountains in Eretz Yisrael.

This appreciation takes on a special dimension when we note that Senir means "a snow-capped mountain." Even the uninhabitable mountain peaks of Eretz Yisrael were so beloved by the nations that they called their great mountain-top cities by that name.

(Chullin 60b)


The Love of the Land Archives

Written by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach, Dean, Ohr Somayach Institutions
General Editor: Rabbi Moshe Newman
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