The Mishkan: An Analysis of a Shiur by Rav Soloveitchik

We make brachot whenever we derive benefit from this world. When do we make a bracha on life itself!

According to Rav Joseph B. Soloveitchik we redeem ourselves by emulating God: והלכת בדרכיו. God doesn't expect anything from us that He doesn't do Himself. God is everywhere (מלא כל הארץ כבודו). When God created this world he contracted Himself (צמצום). When the Mishkan is built Hashem confines Himself into the one square amah area מבין שני הכרובים - between the two kruvim the place from which He speaks to Moshe ("ונועדתי לך שם ודברתי אתך מעל הכפורת").

Just as God contracted Himself to bring the world into being, He expects the same from us. G-d also exhibits צמצום by restraining Himself from exacting vengeance from those who disobey Him. He expects us to do the same, to show ארך אפיים.

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Delivered at the OU Israel Center, February 12, 2019 (7 Adar Aleph 5779)