Framing: Sometimes we need to destroy our old conceptions and frames in order to find treasures buried inside. What appears to be a loss of a structure, a model, solidity, can actually be a blessing.
Key Texts: Leviticus, 14:34, Rashi
לד כִּי תָבֹאוּ אֶל-אֶרֶץ כְּנַעַן, אֲשֶׁר אֲנִי נֹתֵן לָכֶם לַאֲחֻזָּה; וְנָתַתִּי נֶגַע צָרַעַת, בְּבֵית אֶרֶץ אֲחֻזַּתְכֶם.לה וּבָא אֲשֶׁר-לוֹ הַבַּיִת, וְהִגִּיד לַכֹּהֵן לֵאמֹר: כְּנֶגַע, נִרְאָה לִי בַּבָּיִת.
34 When ye are come into the land of Canaan, which I give to you for a possession, and I put the plague of tzaraat in a house of the land of your possession; 35 then he that owneth the house shall come and tell the priest, saying: ‘There seemeth to me to be as it were a plague in the house.’
Rashi: [the tzaraat] is a means of conveying of good news! For the Amorites hid treasures of gold in the walls of their houses all 40 years that Israel was in the desert, and because of the plague the owner would tear it down and would find the treasure.
Modern Application to Israel
Israel challenges us. When we engage in it, we often do so from the comfort of walls that we inhabit. Our intellectual and emotional walls shape our understanding of the situation, letting in certain ideas and feelings while blocking out others. But what treasures are we denying ourselves by putting up these walls? What would happen if we tore them down, even for a moment? What might we discover about Israel? About ourselves?
What are the walls we have as a community around Israel?
Are they walls that shut out the voices of a younger generation?
Are they walls that block out a religious inspiration for Israel?
Are they walls that block the voices of those who disagree with us?