By Rabbi Moshe Goodman, Kollel Ohr Shlomo, Hebron
This parsha is full of re-unification of Israel. Yosef reveals himself to his brothers and as a result all of
Yakov’s family are adjoined together in Goshen, Egypt. This painting seems to express a unification of
Israel in the context of ascent to Jerusalem, the city that unites all Israel around the Temple. We can
consider Hebron as the “sister” city of Jerusalem in this regard, for Hebron means unity and it unites us all
together under our common ancestral roots.
In this painting there are seven “angelic” flying hasidim with blue caps. Below them nine hasidim are
surrounding a harp, and a tenth hasid is blowing a shofar. Two of these hasidim are crowned, apparently
corresponding to Mashiach ben Yosef and Mashiach ben David. Within the Messianic regal figure,
blowing the shofar, there are seven leaves, the special Jewish number, especially associated to the sefira
Malchut, the attribute of the king Mashiach. These leaves may also hint t the vegetative-”growing” status
of Mashiach as we say in our Amida prayers “may You bring the sprout of David.” There are seven other
hasidim adjacent to a blue/white flag, which seems to hint to the white and blue fringes of a talit. It should
be noted that the location of these hasidim is just like the arrangement of the seven lower sefirot, I.e hesed
and gevura opposite each other with tiferet in the middle undrneath them, and netzach and hod like
heaseed and gevura below, with yesod and malchut in the middle underneath them. Other groups/circles
of seven hasidim can be observed, and it seems that there are seven such groups, yet again the special
Jewish number. A common theme in most of these groups are at least two hasidim adjoined with similar
garb. These may show a special unity within each group.
We see seven encampments next to the Temple, I.e the Temple is the eighth construction in their respect.
Also, next to the Temple we see eight storks in the heavens. Indeed, the number eight signifies beyond the
earthly, I.e heavenly. Also the Temple has this heavenly status, for it is the dominion of the heavenly Holy
Presence upon earth.
We see that within the earth there is a deer embedded within, with its antlers protruding into the sky. This
seems to signify that the Holy Land is called “land of the deer.” Our Sages say that this means that, just as
a deer’s skin expands greatly when a matter is placed in it, so too the Holy Land expands, so-to speak, to
include the People of Israel according to their growth.