(11) He came upon a certain place and stopped there for the night, for the sun had set. Taking one of the stones of that place ("me'avnei hamakom"), he put it under his head and lay down in that place.
(18) Early in the morning, Jacob took the stone ("even") that he had put under his head and set it up as a pillar and poured oil on the top of it.
AND PUT THEM FOR A RESTING PLACE FOR HIS HEAD — He arranged them in the form of a cape that had the shape of a rain-gutter around his head for he was afraid of wild beasts (Genesis Rabbah 68:11). They (the stones) began quarrelling with one another. One said, “Upon me let this righteous man rest his head”, and another said “Upon me let him rest it”. Whereupon the Holy One, blessed be He, straightway made them into one stone! This explains what is written (Genesis 28:18), “And he took the stone that he had put under his head” (Chullin 91b).
Outcome #1: The stones got on with each other and Jacob had a good night's sleep (albeit with a pretty incredible dream!) - if they hadn't been united, he would have still had the dream (presumably)
(16) God made the two great lights, the greater light to dominate the day and the lesser light to dominate the night, and the stars.
(1) המאורות הגדולים THE GREAT LUMINARIES — They were created of equal size, but that of the moon was diminished because she complained and said, “It is impossible for two kings to make use of one crown” (Chullin 60b). (2) ואת הכוכבים AND THE STARS — Because He diminished the moon, He increased its attendant hosts to appease it (Genesis Rabbah 6:4).
Outcome #2 The Sun, Moon and stars managed to share the sky with each other peacefully. The moon is still smaller and less bright than the sun!
What has riven the greatest wedge in the Jewish people worldwide?
Religious-secular, Sephardi-Ashkenazi, Zionist - Anti Zionist, Charedi-Charedi etc
Each group claims to be the "stone" that underpins and represents the entire Jewish nation
Each group thinks that they are the sun and need more room in the Jewish world than the moon
(יז) כָּל מַחֲלֹקֶת שֶׁהִיא לְשֵׁם שָׁמַיִם, סוֹפָהּ לְהִתְקַיֵּם. וְשֶׁאֵינָהּ לְשֵׁם שָׁמַיִם, אֵין סוֹפָהּ לְהִתְקַיֵּם. אֵיזוֹ הִיא מַחֲלֹקֶת שֶׁהִיא לְשֵׁם שָׁמַיִם, זוֹ מַחֲלֹקֶת הִלֵּל וְשַׁמַּאי. וְשֶׁאֵינָהּ לְשֵׁם שָׁמַיִם, זוֹ מַחֲלֹקֶת קֹרַח וְכָל עֲדָתוֹ:
(17) Every argument that is for [the sake of] heaven's name, it is destined to endure. But if it is not for [the sake of] heaven's name -- it is not destined to endure. What is [an example of an argument] for [the sake of] heaven's name? The argument of Hillel and Shammai. What is [an example of an argument] not for [the sake of] heaven's name? The argument of Korach and all of his congregation.
The arguments between Hillel and Shammai: In their debates, one of them would render a decision and the other would argue against it, out of a desire to discover the truth, not out of cantankerousness or a wish to prevail over his fellow. That is why when he was right, the words of the person who disagreed, endured. An argument not for the sake of heaven was that of Korach and his company, for they came to undermine Moses, our master, may he rest in peace, and his position, out of envy and contentiousness and ambition for victory.
1) Perhaps, what Gd is teaching us in the two examples, is that sometimes, it takes an outside force to unite us and show us that the way forward is through unity.
2) It might be the antisemitism that we are facing now or maybe the realisation that, we cannot progress our nation unless we speak with a clear, solid and united voice.
3) There is no mention of the kind of stones that were melded together to create Jacob's pillow. It doesn't matter how big or small each one was, or whether they were of different colours. They still united to form one entity.
4) When the sun, moon and stars reached an agreement, the result was that we had the creation of "seasons, days and years", which couldn't have been formed if only one entity were present. It didn't matter how big or bright each one was, it still performs its purpose to this very day.