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Parshat VaYeitze

This week's parsha houses the classic story of Jacob's dream and the angels that went up and down the ladder:

וַיִּפְגַּ֨ע בַּמָּק֜וֹם וַיָּ֤לֶן שָׁם֙ כִּי־בָ֣א הַשֶּׁ֔מֶשׁ וַיִּקַּח֙ מֵאַבְנֵ֣י הַמָּק֔וֹם וַיָּ֖שֶׂם מְרַֽאֲשֹׁתָ֑יו וַיִּשְׁכַּ֖ב בַּמָּק֥וֹם הַהֽוּא׃

וַֽיַּחֲלֹ֗ם וְהִנֵּ֤ה סֻלָּם֙ מֻצָּ֣ב אַ֔רְצָה וְרֹאשׁ֖וֹ מַגִּ֣יעַ הַשָּׁמָ֑יְמָה וְהִנֵּה֙ מַלְאֲכֵ֣י אֱלֹהִ֔ים עֹלִ֥ים וְיֹרְדִ֖ים בּֽוֹ׃

He came upon a certain place and stopped there for the night, for the sun had set. Taking one of the stones of that place, he put it under his head and lay down in that place. He had a dream; a stairway was set on the ground and its top reached to the sky, and angels of God were going up and down on it.

Dreams play an incredibly important part in shaping the Jewish narrative as well as our own identities. It is dreams that act as waypoints that guide us through the journey that is our life. Almost all cultures incorporate dreams as central to growth and inculcation of community.

Dreams reveal our innermost desires and allow us to try on a new reality for a while, an ideal reality. Putting aside the flying animals and awkward laws of natures, dreams allow us to express ultimate creativity, they allow us to mold our own worlds.

Colin Powell puts it best: a dream doesn't become reality through magic; it takes sweat determination and hard work.

May we all be blessed with dreams and the desire to be and act creatively.

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