Leading Idea: The meaning of ‘Lech L’cha’

Leading Idea:  The Multiple Meanings of Lech L’cha

‘Lech l’cha’ is generally taken as an expression meaning “Go forth”. But this isn’t the only way of reading it. While Lech l’cha on its own is a command (like sit! or stop!), lech on its own means ‘go’ and l’cha’ on its own generally means ‘to you’. What might these mean when put together?

In this unit we explore the following different readings of the phrase ‘Lechl’cha’.

 1. Go forth (move forward, leave where you are)

2. Go for yourself (for your own benefit, for your own good)

3. Go to yourself (as an inner journey)

4. Go to yourself (towards the person you will become)

Each of these offers a different understanding of Avram’s journey.