The Zohar/Rav Brandwein Writings
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PARSHAS VAYAKHEL - PEKUDEI
Rabbi Avraham Brandwein of Yerushalayim 5764 (in translation)
With the help of Heaven!
“And Moshe assembled all of the nation of the Bnei Yisroel… ‘For six days you will work, and on the seventh day, it will be for you Holy.’”
We need to understand, what is the connection between the building of the Mishkan (Tabernacle) to the keeping of Shabbos (Sabbath)?
The matter is that the main goal of the building of the Mishkan is that we should prepare a place in this world for the dwelling of the Shechinah, as it is written in Parshas Terumah, “And make for Me a Holy Place, and I will dwell within it.” Therefore, the Mishkan was composed from the inanimate, vegetable, and animal. The inanimate (materials) are the ground, upon which stood the Mishkan, and also the vessels of gold, silver, and copper. The vegetative (materials) are the boards and the stakes of the Mishkan. The animal (materials) are the curtains of goatskin and Tachash (multicolored skins of a special animal), which were made to cover the Mishkan.
All of (these materials) come (to be part of the Mishkan) in order to elevate to Holiness the material of this world, so that it be readied as a vessel for the dwelling of the Shechinah, which will descend from “above to below”. This is not (the case with) Shabbos, (since the) ascension (of the worlds on Shabbos) is from “below to above”. On the day of Shabbos there is an ascent of the worlds, and therefore, in this material world, work is forbidden, since even here (in this world) it is like “the world to come.” Therefore, all types of work, which were performed for the Mishkan, are forbidden on Shabbos, since [this work of the six days,] its role is to bring down Holiness to this material world. This is not so by Shabbos, there is no need for work and repair, since the material world ascends to the spiritual worlds.
The Mishkan needed to be built like this world, which is the body of man.
The brain corresponds to the Ark in the Holy of Holies, the Menorah and the
Shulchan (Table) correspond to the heart and the lungs. Afterwards, the rest
of the vessels correspond to the lower parts of the body. Therefore, the Mishkan
atoned for the sin of the golden calf. (By the sin of the golden calf,) they
made a material object and said it was Divine. The repair (of this sin) is
to show that even though Holiness descends to the material, (nevertheless there
is the clarifying concept) of Shabbos, which shows that, Holiness is loftier
than the material, and G-d forbid for one to equate (the material with the
This is also the secret of our deliverance. By (fulfillment of), “And He assembled all of the nation of the Bnei Yisroel,” we will merit the complete deliverance, speedily in our days, Amen.