Do It Yourself – Naso
Parshat Naso, boasting a total of 176 verses, is the longest portion in the Torah. As a rule, the Torah is extremely concise, sparing in its words and including only what’s absolutely necessary. There is not a superfluous word or even letter in the Torah; and the Sages elucidate every corner of every tiny letter yud.
Yet suddenly, Parshat Naso presents lengthy separate descriptions of the sacrifices offered by each one of the Nesi’im—the Chiefs of every Tribe, although each offering was identical. Incredibly, the Torah reiterates the precise offering twelve times in this parshah, rather than describing the sacrifice once and stating that it was offered by each of the twelve Nesi’im.
Rabbi Moshe Yechiel Halevi Epstein, known as the Be’er Moshe, cites the Sages in the Midrash: “Even though their sacrifice was identical; their intentions were not identical.”
While each of the twelve sacrifices was the same, the Torah lists the sacrifice of each Nasi separately to underscore that each one arrived at the Mishkan with his unique intentions and heart. Nachshon ben Aminadav offered his sacrifice while focusing on the Kingdom; Netanel ben Tzoar of the Tribe of Binyamin focused on the Torah. So too, each and every Nasi had a different focus in his heart, meriting a separate description of his sacrifice; and I believe that this teaches a fundamental lesson in reflecting upon the uniqueness of each and every individual.
As none of us are the chiefs of our tribes, but rather normal people who aspire to build our own mini-Temples in the privacy of our homes, I wish to dedicate these next words to the special things that we do on our own to foster a special, unique atmosphere. While we may perform an identical action, guided by principles and rules delivered across the board, each and every person inevitably emerges with a completely different result.
DIY—Do It Yourself—developed as a useful system whose initial goal was to save the customer money. Yet it quickly sprouted wings and gained momentum, acquiring a distinct, creative name in the world of design. And since every person “does it himself,” the results are unsurprisingly diverse, because every person infuses the “it” with his own unique flavor, touch and style.
Commemorating the 12 Nesi’im, I present 12 DIY Blogs, some local and some from abroad. Some are geared to beginners, while others are for my advanced readers.
Let me hear back from you! Did you try any of them? Where? For whom? And what was your inner intention—the personal touch , dimension, and flair that you injected into it?!