In the Dayenu hymn in the Passover Haggadah, we list all the wonders that G‑d did for us when we left Egypt. After each of the fifteen stanzas of this hymn we say, "dayenu"—"it would have sufficed us."

"If He had brought us out from Egypt, and had not carried out judgments against them—dayenu, it would have sufficed us!" etc.

One of the stanzas says: "If He had brought us to Mount Sinai, but not given us the Torahdayenu!" Now this seems puzzling. What in the world would be the point of going to Mount Sinai if not to receive the Torah? What other point is there in being there? After all, at this particular mountain there is neither food, nor water or skiing...

Something special happened at Sinai even before G‑d appeared to the Jewish peopleBut actually, something very special happened at Sinai even before G‑d appeared to the Jewish people. The Torah tells us that "Vayichan sham Yisrael neged hahar," "Israel camped there opposite the mountain." The biblical commentator Rashi points out that the word the Torah uses, וַיִחַן (vayichan), is in the singular tense—"he camped" rather than "they camped."

This, Rashi explains, denotes that the entire nation encamped there as one man with one heart.

The Dayenu tells us that if all that was accomplished was the Jewish people standing united for one moment—this itself is an accomplishment of amazing worth. Coming together as one and putting aside all our differences for a greater purpose is one of the greatest mitzvot we can do. It stands on its own, and was a moment of closeness to G‑d that carried significance even if the Torah had not been given.1