Does Judaism believe in unicorns? I once heard that the Torah says they really do exist!


Yes, we do believe in unicorns. I have seen one. And I bet you have too.

The Torah relates that the Israelites made a Mishkan, a portable temple in the desert. G‑d instructed them to make one of the roof coverings out of the skin of a mysterious animal called a tachash.1

Our sages described the tachash as a desert animal with a stunning multicolored hide and one horn in the middle of its head. The tachash appeared suddenly when the Mishkan was being built, then disappeared without a trace, never to be seen again.2

There is a powerful message behind this enchanting description. The building of the Temple is a symbol of our life mission to create a home for G‑d in this world, to shape our lives into a sanctuary where holiness can dwell.

Life is made up of many fleeting moments. The years fly by, the days come and go, and opportunities appear and disappear—like the tachash—here today and gone tomorrow.

Each one of these moments is multicolored, multifaceted and multilayered. We have good days and not-such-good days. Even on a good day there can be some challenges, and on a not-such-good day there are blessings as well.

As many colors of the day as there are, there is only one horn pointing straight ahead. Everything we face, every day of our lives, all point in one direction. We are all here for a short while, to fulfill our mission to make our world kinder and happier. Every interaction we have, every experience we go through, every person we meet and every place we go comes to one point: make this moment a holy moment.

So you have seen the mysterious tachash. It is the beautiful moment you are living right now. It will soon disappear. Grab it by the horn.