Thursday, April 26, 2012

We've Gotta Live Together - A Musical Tribute to Jewish Unity

 
As we observe Israel's 64th Independence Day today, it's fitting that we focus on  the many streams of Jewish culture that fit together to form the mosaic that we call Israel. 

These streams are varied in national origin, language, culture, and degree and style of religious observance. But they have more in common than the factors that separate them and sometimes bring them into conflict.

As the Aish.com website points out:
Jewish unity was a precondition for entering the Covenant at Sinai. And Jewish unity – pooling all our diverse talents and strengths – is likewise key to fulfilling our national destiny of creating a more spiritual and perfect world.
That does not mean we all need to be identical. Rather, unity means showing respect to each individual and appreciating their unique contribution to the collective whole. According to the Midrash, there are “seventy faces to Torah” and each of the Twelve Tribes had their own “gate in Heaven” through which their prayers entered. We are all on the same team – and each of us adds positively to the mix.
Especially in these challenging times, it is crucial that we build unity among Jews by engaging in acts of kindness, caring and tolerance toward others. The Talmud says that it was baseless hatred amongst Jews that brought about the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem. Only through unconditional love will it be rebuilt.
The Aish.com team has put together a little video set in Jerusalem's Ben Yehuda mall that illustrates the beauty of performing small acts of kindness that bring people of different backgrounds together. In this video one seemingly insignificant act of picking up and returning a dropped glove leads to one act after another that form a chain of smiles that lights up the popular thoroughfare. The video is set to the 1968 song Everyday People by Sly and the Family Stone.  Enjoy!

(A SPECIAL NOTE FOR NEW EMAIL SUBSCRIBERS:  THE VIDEO MAY NOT BE VIEWABLE DIRECTLY FROM THE EMAIL THAT YOU GET EACH DAY ON SOME COMPUTERS AND TABLETS.  YOU MUST CLICK ON THE TITLE AT THE TOP OF THE EMAIL TO REACH THE JEWISH HUMOR CENTRAL WEBSITE, FROM WHICH YOU CLICK ON THE PLAY BUTTON IN THE VIDEO IMAGE TO START THE VIDEO.)