Love of the Land

For the week ending 26 November 2011 / 28 Heshvan 5772

Nachalat Tzvi - Land of the Deer

by Rabbi Mendel Weinbach zt'l
The Color of HeavenArtscroll

In describing Eretz Yisrael the Prophet Yirmiyahu uses the term tzvi which has a double meaning: "desirable" and "deer".

But why should the land be compared to a deer?

One of the Talmudic Sages, Rabbi Chisda (Mesechta Ketubot 112a) offers this explanation: Just as the skin of the deer shrinks after it is removed from its body and is no longer capable of containing the animal’s flesh, so too does Eretz Yisrael produce so much fruit that there is not enough room to store it. And just as the deer is the fleetest of the animals, so is Eretz Yisrael the fleetest of all lands in bringing forth its fruit.

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