Always Historicize

I want to share (belatedly) one of R. Levi Yitzchak of Berditchev’s comments on the torah portion that just passed; I study the Berditchever’s book, the Kedushas Levi, with my father every week.

The portion, Trumah, describes in great detail the plan for the desert sanctuary. For many readers, I think, this extended ekphrasis raises (at least) two problems: (1) Who cares about all these details? Why are they important? (2) This is not at all how we serve God. It’s alienating to feel that we are far removed religiously from our forebears. I think Levi Yitzchak has good answers to both questions. Below are the text, a loose translation, and a few comments. Continue reading

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