Symbols in the synagogue

In the synagogue, you will come across symbols.  Three symbols are explained below, namely, the ‘Star of David’, the ‘Menorah’ and the ‘Crown’.  As you go on this virtual tour of the synagogue, make a note of all the different places where you see these symbols.  

The Star of David

As we have already seen, the Star of David is a six-pointed star.  It was not originally a Jewish symbol, but it has become associated with the Jewish people.  It is found on the flag of Israel today. David was the greatest Jewish king. He lived about three thousand years ago. Tradition says that King David had this symbol on his shield.

The Menorah

This is the main religious symbol of Judaism. The original Menorah was a very large oil lamp with seven branches and was found in the Temple in Jerusalem. The central light of the Menorah represented God. This light was always kept alight, as a symbol that God was always present in the Temple. The other six lights represented the six days of creation and all that God created, including people. The Romans destroyed the Temple and the Menorah nearly two thousand years ago. 

The Crown
This is not a Jewish symbol as such, but it is often found in the synagogue.  Crowns are usually worn by kings and queens, very important and powerful individuals who rule over the people in their kingdom.  In the synagogue, the crown is a symbol that God is King.  It is also a symbol showing the importance of the Torah – that the Torah, God’s law, should rule over the lives of the people.