Commentary: Why $72
The number 72 has a number of significant meanings in Hebrew spirituality.
· Most importantly, there are 72 names of God which are used throughout Torah and our tradition.
· Gematria (Hebrew numerology) Most people know that 18 = Chai = Life. Taking the letters Chet (= 8) and Yud (= 10) together, Chet + Yud (or Chai) = 18. The number 4 is a very mystical number, having to do with the concept of Wholeness, Balance, Harmony: 4 worlds of Kaballah, the 4 Directions, the 4 Elements, the 4 Animal Beings of Ezekiel’s mystical chariot vision. Not to mention the significance of the number 4 for Pesach specifically: The 4 questions, 4 cups of wine, 4 types of children, 4 expressions of salvation from Egypt, etc etc.
· So putting things together, we see that 4 X 18 equals 4 times Chai, a life of wholeness = 72 = all the names of the Divine. So choose the meaning of wholeness that you prefer for the number 4, multiple by Life 18, and you arrive at $72 – the cost to attend this year’s Passover Village.
· For a child (defined as below the usual bar/bat mitzvah age of 13), the cost is half that, 2 times Chai, $36.