Pekudei 2024



By Rabbi Moshe Goodman, Kollel Ohr Shlomo, Hebron

In this parsha we find that the building of the Mishkan is described, ending with a verse that also
describes the cloud that rested with the Holy Presence at the Mishkan that went with Israel in all of their
travels. Similarly we see in this painting the Temple, which is the continuation of the Mishkan, with a
cloud upon it. It seems that this cloud, along with representing the resting of the Holy Presence, may also
represent the resting of blessing with this Presence, since many drops of water representing blessing are
also painted here. There is also a group of drops that seem to form one drop surrounded with righteous
hasidim at the top of the painting. The righteous are Kabbalistically associated with the sefira of yesod
which is strongly connected with the sefira of Da’at as well, which are both also symbolized by “the
drop.” All these are also awakened by the waving of the four species on Sukkot, as painted at the bottom
of the painting. Note also that the main Biblical commandment of waving these species is at the Temple,
also painted here. The holiday of Sukkot is also known to be the time the world is judged for rain, another
theme that can be attributed to these drops.
Returning to the hasidim, we find that they are seven, along with the seven trees with red berries at the
bottom of the painting, representing the special Jewish number. This parallelism may represent a
connection between the heavenly hasidim and the earthly trees, representing the blessing that comes from
heaven to earth. Also note that on the holiday of Sukkot we invite the seven Ushpizin, saintly guests, to
our Sukka. These seven hasidim correspond to the seven lower sefirot as these Ushpizin are also
associated. We find one hasid holding a Menora, representing the power of light, which was created on the
first day of Creation, which is Kabbalistically associated to the sefira of hesed. On the other side is a hasid
holding fire, which is associated with the sefira of gevura. At the center of all at the top of these hasidim is
the “central path” associated to tiferet. To the sides of this hasid are two hasidim holding the four species.
The Midrash describes the four species as symbols of victory. The sefirot of netzach and hod, considered
adjacent/”students” of the tiferet, are also connected to the holy Name Tzevaot, which literally means
“army” by which victory is achieved. Below these towards the center there are two hasidim crowned.
These represent yesod and malchut, considered more “central-pathed” sefirot and that are also associated
with kingship. The yesod is associated with the kingship of Mashiach ben Yosef, and the malchut is
associated with the kingship of Mashaich ben David. Hebron is a conduit towards all the righteous, since
all of these Ushpizin are deeply connected to this place. The three Patriarcrhs are obvious. According to
the Midrash Moshe Rabeinu was brought to rest at Maarat Hamachpela after his passing. For this reason
there is an ancient custom to make pilgrimage to Maarat Hamchpela on the 7th

of Adar, the yahrzeit and
date of birth of Moshe Rabeinu. Thus Aharon, Moshe’s brother whose spiritual work was strongly
associated with that of Moshe, is also connected to Hebron. Also, the Mishkan/Temple strongly associated
with Aharon the Kohen, is considered by the Arizal to come through the spiritual work done in Hebron
which triggers the building of the Temple in Jerusalem. Yosef was sent to Shechem from Hebron. David
began his rule in Hebron. Let us follow in their footsteps!

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