Love of the Land

Love of the Land - Land of the Deer

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


A heathen skeptic once scoffed at the claim made by the Sages that millions of Jews once lived in a part of Eretz Yisrael called Har Hamelech; he accused them of being liars because the area could not possibly hold so many people.

To this Rabbi Chanina responded with the description given by the Prophet Yirmiyahu of Eretz Yisrael as "the land of the deer." Why is it compared to a deer? When the skin of a deer is removed from its carcass it is impossible to once again have it envelop the deer's flesh, because it has contracted. In similar fashion, when Jews live in Eretz Yisrael the Land expands to absorb them but when they do not live in the Land it contracts.

(Gittin 57a)

The Love of the Land Archives

Written by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach, Dean, Ohr Somayach Institutions
General Editor: Rabbi Moshe Newman
HTML Production: Eli Ballon
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