Kuntres Beis Rabbeinu Sh’b’Bavel: The Place of the Beis Hamikdosh in Golus

Kuntres Beis Rabbeinu Sh’b’Bavel: The Place of the Beis Hamikdosh in Golus

“I will be for them a small sanctuary (mikdash me’at) in the lands where they will come.” (Yechezkiel 11:16)

Our sages explain this psouk to mean that even outside of Eretz Yisroel, in the place and time of golus, there is a “small mikdash” which is a scaled-down example of the “great mikdash” in Yerushalayim.  Rebbi Yitzchok in the gemora (Megillah 29a) said that these are the shuls and study halls in Bovel (Babylon), and Rebbi Eliezer said that this is “Beis Rabbeinu sh’b’Bovel” — “the house of our Rebbe in Bovel”.

The Rebbe, as might be expected, holds that these two sages do not have an argument, that each one surely agrees with the opinion of the other; the only difference is what they consider to be the main and most important fulfillment of the prophecy of “mikdash me’at“.  Rebbi Eliezer holds that it is the study hall (place of learning) and shul (place of Tefilla) of “Rabbeinu”.  Every shul possesses this quality in a small measure, but the primary and most complete manifestation of it is in the shul and study hall of the Rav whose Torah decisions are followed by the people of the city.  And, in a fuller sense, there is one place which is the main “mikdash me’at” in the time of golus: the shul and study hall of the leader of the generation.

Our sages state that “Everywhere that Yisroel were exiled, the Shechina was exiled with them.”  The sages in our gemora asked where in Bovel is the Shechina to be found?  Abaye answered: in the shul of Hutzal and the shul of Shaf v’Yosiv in Nehardea — sometimes here and sometimes there.  These were two unique shuls in Bovel, the first being close to the study hall of the revered Ezra the Sofer, the second being built from stones that were brought from the Beis Hamikdosh in Yerushalayim and “the Shechina was always found there” (Rashi).   It called “Shaf v’Yosiv” (meaning “uprooted and [re]settled”) to indicate that “the Mikdash travelled and settled there”.  It was literally the Beis Hamidkash of that generation, as “the revelation of the Shechina that was in the Beis Hamikdosh in Yerushalayim (and nowhere else) traveled and settled in this special place in Bovel, in place of the Mikdash in Yerushalayim.

Of course, the Shechina dwells in every shul where Jews gather for Tefillah, and every study hall where they learn Torah, but nowhere is the Shechina more revealed than in the Beis Hamikdosh in Yerushalayim, or (in the time of golus) in these special buildings.   Similarly we find that “in the future the shuls and study halls of Bovel will be established in Eretz Yisroel” — this is true of every shul and study hall, all of which will be connected to the Third Beis Hamikdosh in Yerushalayim.  And when these places are relocated to Eretz Yisroel, the revelation of the Shechina will also return to Eretz Yisroel, and there will no longer be a revelation of the Shechina outside the land of Israel where the “mikdash me’at” stood.  The Rebbe adds (quoting the Maharsha): Continue reading

The Beis Hamikdosh Here in the Time and Place of Golus

The Rebbe mentions, in the printed sicha of Vayera 5752 (last week), a midrash* which states that the month of Marcheshvan (when the construction of the first Beis Hamikdash was completed, but it wasn’t opened until the following Tishrei) “lost out” and in the time to come the Holy One, blessed be He, will pay her back with the inauguration (chanukas) of the 3rd Beis Hamikdash which will take place in the month of Marcheshvan.

What significance does this have to the events of Marcheshvan 5752, when the sicha was spoken and printed?  Several days after the sicha was spoken, and a day or two before the sicha appeared, in that very month of Marcheshvan, there was a revelation of the Beis Hamikdash.

This revelation was (and is) contained in a small booklet, the Kuntres Beis Rabbeinu sh’b’Bavel, edited by the Rebbe and published in honor of 20 Marcheshvan (birthday of the Rebbe Rashab).  In this Kuntres, the Rebbe explains the words of the Gemara that the following the destruction of the Beis Hamikdash, the revelation of the Shechina which was revealed in the Beis Hamikdash “traveled” from Yerushalayim together with the Jews as they went into golus.  Where did it settle?  In the study hall and synagogue of the leader of the respective generations.  In our generation, explains the Rebbe, this is 770 Eastern Parkway, the study hall and synagogue of the Rebbe, the leader of the generation (of course, the Rebbe makes the reference to his father-in-law, the Previous Rebbe).

Not only is every shul a “mikdash me’at“, a “miniature sanctuary”, but the shul of the leader of the generation is in fact a counterpart to the Beis Hamikdash that stood in Yerushalayim, and the revelation of the Shechina which is present there is the same revelation that was in Yerushalayim.  (If one will ask why we don’t see this, learn the Dvar Malchus of parshas Vayera, wherein the Rebbe explains the difference between something being revealed from Above, and the concurrent need for the recipient to be a fitting vessel for that revelation in order to experience it.)

In other words, 770 Eastern Parkway is the place in golus where the revelation of the Shechina is presently situated as long as the Jews are in golus.  And it will be the first place where the Third Beis Hamikdash will be revealed, after which it will return to Yerushalayim.  In the Rebbe’s words:

Now we can appreciate the unique greatness of Beis Rabbeinu: As the main Small Temple of the final exile, Beis Rabbeinu is the very place of the future Beis Hamikdash, and moreover, the place where the future Beis Hamikdash will first be revealed, and the place from which it will return to Yerushalayim.

The implications are startling: this Kuntres reveals to us, based on the Rebbe’s explanation of a posuk in Yechezkiel and a sugya in the gemora, that the Beis Hamikdash is located at 770 Eastern Parkway, and this is the “very place itself”** (מקום המקדש גופיה דלעתיד) where the 3rd Beis Hamikdash will descend from Heaven, and from this place it will travel to Yerushalayim!

In other words, the Beis Hamikdash (as well as the place of the 3rd Beis Hamikdash) has been revealed in the realm of the intellect!  In the month of Marcheshvan.  And as the Rebbe explains, in last week’s sicha, in order to experience the revelation we have to desire it and then labor to make ourselves a fitting vessel (like Avraham Avinu did and thus he merited that Hashem was revealed to him), otherwise it will remain in the intellectual realm, unseen by physical eyes.

Please, do not suffice with these few words in this meager essay, but take the opportunity to read through (and even better–learn properly and in depth) the Kuntres Beis Rabbeinu sh’b’Bavel (available for viewing and printing here).  After all, the Rebbe emphasizes numerous times that it is through learning the inyonim of Moshiach and Geulah that we speed up the actual true and complete Geulah.  As the Rebbe says–all elements of the Geulah are here, we simply need to agree and desire and open our eyes.  Learning these inyonim is the “fast way” to open our eyes.

It’s up to us!

* Yalkut Shimoni, Melachim I, remez 184.  Footnote #108 in the sicha.

** See the maamor “Gadol Habayis Hazeh”, section IV and forward, for the significance of the place of the Beis Hamikdash as opposed to the structure itself.

“Beis Rabbeinu sh’b’Bavel” — A must!

This incredible kuntres (edited by the Rebbe  and distributed for 20 Cheshvan, 5752, the birthday of the Rebbe Rashab), is a systematic explanation of how in every generation the synagogue and study hall of the Nosi Hador, the spiritual head of the generation, is the replacement for the Holy Temple during the exile.  It is the place where the Shechina is revealed in the strongest measure.  In our times, this is 770 Eastern Parkway, the synagogue and study hall of “my father-in-law the Rebbe, the leader of the generation”.  Additionally, the Rebbe explains how the Nosi Hador is the Moshiach of the generation.

Click below to access a PDF file containing a professionally produced, accurate translation (by R’ Alexander Zushe Kohn שיחיה) with accompanying footnotes.  Not to be missed!

icon_pdf
Annotated translation of the Kuntres Beis Rabbeinu sh’b’Bavel — “The Holy Temple In Transit”

“Beis Rabbeinu sh’b’Bavel” — A must!

This incredible kuntres (edited by the Rebbe  and distributed for 20 Cheshvan, 5752, the birthday of the Rebbe Rashab), is a systematic explanation of how in every generation the synagogue and study hall of the Nosi Hador, the spiritual head of the generation, is the replacement for the Holy Temple during the exile.  It is the place where the Shechina is revealed in the strongest measure.  In our times, this is 770 Eastern Parkway, the synagogue and study hall of “my father-in-law the Rebbe, the leader of the generation”.  Additionally, the Rebbe explains how the Nosi Hador is the Moshiach of the generation.

Click below to access a PDF file containing a professionally produced, accurate translation (by R’ Alexander Zushe Kohn שיחיה) with accompanying footnotes.  Not to be missed!

icon_pdf
Annotated translation of the Kuntres Beis Rabbeinu sh’b’Bavel — “The Holy Temple In Transit”