"By you shall Israel bless saying, and may Yahveh make you like Ephraim and like Manasseh."
Why did Jacob want his future descendants to bless their children like Ephraim
and Manasseh, of all the tribes?
These two sons exemplified a fundamental principle of the
Torah: There was no competition between them and neither considered himself greater than his brother. Although
Jacob set Ephraim, the younger son, above Manasseh, the firstborn, Manasseh was not jealous and Ephraim
did not become arrogant. Each had a deep respect for the other and was happy with the other's success.
Jacob hoped that all of his children for all generations to come would behave so beautifully. He therefore
created this tradition that all fathers should bless their children in this way.