Latest update: May 23rd, 2013
So too, when Jews gather together to perform a holy act, it is no longer ten or twenty individuals; it is a new entity – a tzibbur. That tzibbur is far more powerful than the sum of all its members. It is now in a new category and taps an energy source that is infinitely more powerful than any of the individual members can muster. The impact and effect that it brings about is far greater and it can now accomplish far more than any of its members acting alone.
This seems to be the answer to this Rashi. Much like a kosher pair of tefillin or a complete sefer Torah, a hundred Jews acting in unison reach a new plateau of effectiveness, multiple times that of the individuals involved. They have tapped the force of the tzibbur. A hundred will chase ten thousand.
This concept has great relevance to us in helping us be more successful. The Gemara (Tannis 8a) tells us that while all prayer works, for it to be heard, it must be said with an outpouring of emotion. Only when tefillah comes from a deep devotion and is expressed with sincere, powerful intention, will it move mountains – unless it is said b’tzibbur. Then, with or without this deep level of kavanah, it will accomplish its intended purpose.
It is clear from the Gemara that the same prayer, the same intention, and the same person will find much greater results from his davening because has joined a minyan. He may not have changed, but his circumstances have. He is now in an assemblage that has joined together, and its efficacy far outweighs that of all the individuals combined. By sharing in the merit of that group, his prayer will have a far greater effect. He has put the power of a tzibbur to work.
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