For the week ending 18 September 2021 / 12 Tishrei 5782

Perek Shira - The Song of Existence - The Date Palm

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by Rabbi Shmuel Kraines

The date palm says: “The righteous man will sprout like a date palm, like a cedar in Lebanon he will grow sturdily.” (Tehillim 92:13)

The date palm sings of how Hashem’s nation towers spiritually since they love only Him.

The date palm is a symbol of the Jewish People. It has only one heart in its center, and it therefore grows in only one direction — heavenward. So too, the Jewish nation has only one heart — for their Father in Heaven. Other trees, however, have multiple hearts and grow in all directions. The single-minded devotion of the date palm empowers it to tower over other trees. So too, the righteous people rise proudly and produce date-like nutritious fruits full of sweetness.

An additional symbolism of the date palm is that all of its parts have beneficial uses. Its lulavim are used to laud Hashem, its branches for schach, its tough fiber can be used to fashion ropes, its wood for building, and its remainder for firewood. So too, the Jewish People have no waste products. All Jews are Torah scholars to some extent, performers of mitzvahs, givers of charity, and more. Indeed, Jews may vary, and may even disagree, but all are essential, and all are headed in the same heavenward direction.

*In loving memory of Harav Zeev Shlomo ben Zecharia Leib

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