Vol 39.02 - Shabbat Chazon       Spanish French Audio  Video

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(5751) The saying of R' Levi Yitzchak of Berdichev that on Shabbat Chazon "each and every one of us is shown the future Temple from afar".  Explantion of the wording "shown ...from afar"

The advantage of seeing the third Temple when Shabbat Chazon falls on Tisha B'Av


1. Concerning the inner explanation of the name "Shabbat Chazon"

(which plainly is named after the haftarah),

it is known that which is cited by the famous Rabbi Hillel of Paritz “in the name of the Rabbi of Berdichev, a”h (Nbg”m) that Shabbat Chazon is from the word to see () namely that “each person of Yisroel is shown the Future Temple from afar" (as will be explained in Par 2).

One could say that when Shabbat Chazon falls on the day of Tisha B’Av itself (as in this year's occurrence), this concept of seeing the Future Temple - it is even more strong and powerful.

It is known that the purpose of the fasts (and therefore, their inner intention even now) is that they will be overturned to holidays, and days of gladness and joy.

And in the words of Rambam:

“Ultimately, they will be transformed into holidays and days of rejoicing and celebration”

This aspect is especially emphasized on the fast of Tisha B’Av. For “we do not say Tachanun nor Selichot on Tisha B’Av, and we do not fall on our faces, since it is called a holiday (Mo'ed).”

Moreover, it states in the Talmud Yerushalmi that on the day that the Temple was destroyed (Tisha B’Av) King Moshiach was born”.  And especially according to what is known, that on the day a person is born, his Mazal is greater (). Therefore, according to this we find that on the day of Tisha B’Av, the Mazal of Moshiach Tzidkeinu is in force, and that it is an auspicious day for the aspect of salvation and Geulah.

This matter is related to actual Halacha, as R’ Chaim Vital writes in the name of the Arizal, that this is one of the reasons that we recite “verses of consolation” () on the day of Tisha B’Av at the Mincha service . . for on the afternoon (Mincha) of Tisha B’Av, Moshiach was born who is called "Menachem” (consolation). And one could say that this is the inner reason that Tisha B’Av is called a “holiday (Mo’ed)".

According  to this one could say that when the fast of Tisha B’Av falls on Shabbat Kodesh, where we postpone the fast till Sunday, that it is only a matter related to the fast and the laws of affliction and mourning, etc. ().

However, regarding the aspect of the matter of the "Mo’ed" that is within it, which is due to the birth of the savior of Yisroel, and that it is an auspicious day for consolation and redemption, it is not postponed due to Shabbat. On the contrary, these aspects are mainly in force, on the day of Shabbat.

This is similar to what was written in another place (לקו"ש חל"ג ע' 159) regarding all the fasts, that when they occur on the day of the Shabbat, only the aspect of the fast is postponed. However the aspect of the day being called a “favorable day to of G-d" () is not postponed due to Shabbat Kodesh. On the contrary, it is an auspicious time that is stronger and more powerful, for “they are called ()

And we are commanded to delight in it with the pleasure of eating and drinking etc. and we find that when the fast falls on the day of Shabbat Kodesh, that is it like a “Yom Tov" and day of “rejoicing and celebration” ().

From this, it is understood for our purposes as well.

For when Tisha B’Av falls on Shabbat Kodesh, its inner aspect, namely that it is a Mo’ed and auspicious day for the aspects of salvation, Geulah and consolation, and that this is emphasized in a revealed manner, even the seeing of the Future Temple on this day (since it is Shabbat Chazon) is also more intense with greater force and power.

2, One could explain the special virtue of seeing the Future Temple, when Shabbat Chazon falls on Tisha B’Av itself, by prefacing an explanation in the continuation of the words of R’ Levi Yitzchak of Berditchev, who brings a parable to explain that which from afar, each person is shown the Future Temple:

He writes:

“This is a parable . . of a father who had a precious son and made for him a precious garment to wear. And since the son was not careful with that garment, and did deeds that should not be done, he tore it to shreds. The father then made him a second garment, but the child tore this one up as well. What did the father do? He made for him a third garment yet did not permit the lad to wear it, but rather hid it. However, at appointed times, he would show him the garment and say to him: ‘See, if you will conduct yourself, you will be given this garment to wear’. (And because of this, the father trained his son to act in a proper manner, until he was certain that it became his nature. At that point, the father gave him the garment and allowed him to wear it, for he was not afraid that he might return to his untoward ways since it became second nature to his son etc. And this is sufficient for the wise”.

In other words, the purpose of "seeing . . the Future Temple” is to accustom Bnei Yisroel to walk in the correct  path until this conduct is “like second nature” for them, and then the Temple will be given to them below.

On must explain the correlation of the parable to the essence of its meaning. For seemingly, the parable is well and good. For the garment itself is just a consequential reward and does not cause, of its own accord, that the son will behave properly. Therefore only by the father withholding the garment and just showing it to him and telling him: “See, if you behave in the proper way, you will be given this garment”, this trains him to follow the correct path.

However, in reality, the actual existence of the Mikdash effects the improving and betterment of the condition of Bnei Yisroel, since it is the place of revelation of the Shechinah and seeing G-d.

Therefore, one must understand:

How is it possible, that seeing G-dliness during the Temple’s existence, when the Beit HaMikdash was standing and Bnei Yisroel would ascend for the festivals and see with their own eyes, the ten miracles that were performed for our ancestors in the Temple, and for many years – that this did not cause that they would improve their ways.

(Even though at the time, there were prophets who rebuked Yisroel and warned them that their evil deeds would cause Galut and the destruction of the Temple.)

Yet though this, namely by just seeing the Future Temple from afar, and in this matter, only for "certain periods", it has the power to influence Bnei Yisroel to follow the path of righteousness until it becomes "like nature" in their souls?

3. One could say that the explanation of this is alluded to tin the words of the R’ Levi Yitzchak of Berditchev, "every person is shown from afar a vision of the Future Beis HaMikdash". For this, seemingly requires explanation.

“Seeing” and “from afar” are two different matters.


  1. "seeing” shows that the thing is near
  2. It “brings near (מקרבת)” and informs of the details of the thing to the one that sees it.

(And as is known, the difference between seeing and hearing. For seeing is from being close and hearing is from afar. In other words, seeing reaches the soul and penetrates into the person with a certainty and truth that does not exist with hearing. For when a person sees something, proofs and evidence that contradict his vision do not help. For since he himself saw it, it is more correct and clear for him, than any other logical explanation.

This is emphasized in Halacha, as it states: “A witness cannot be a judge” (). The reason for this, as is cited in the Talmud, is because “since he saw it etc. he will not find for him any merit”. Whereas when the judges hear from the witnesses, even though it is clear to them that the witnesses are telling the truth, they can find a merit for the person, since the certainty and reaction from seeing is greater than the certainty and reaction from hearing).

If so, what is meant by “every Jew is shown a vision of the Future Beis HaMikdash from afar“?  If this is in a manner of seeing, it emphasizes that it is not "from afar" but "close"?

One could say that the intent of this is teach us that two opposite things are necessary in order that the walking in the proper path will be "like nature" in a way that will bring the giving of the Future Mikdash.

4. The explanation of the matter is:

The view of the Zohar is well known, namely that the Third Temple will be built by the Holy One, Blessed be He, “G-d’s building” ().

As Rashi states: "The Future Temple that we hope for is ‘built and elaborate’ (בנוי ומשוכלל) and will be revealed and come from Heaven as it states: ‘"The sanctuary, O L-rd, which Your hands founded"”

However, on the other hand we see, in the words of the Sages that the Temple will be built by Bnei Yisroel. And this is the also the ruling of Rambam that Moshiach will build the Temple. His reason is seemingly plain for the building of the Beit HaMikdash is a Positive Commandment as it states: “Make for Me a sanctuary”, and a Mitzvah is incumbent upon all Bnei Yisroel.

It has already been explained many times that one can say many corollaries between the two opinions. For both of them are found in it (namely that the building of the Beit HaMikdash below will be through man’s handiwork and this Mikdash below will descend and dwell in the spiritual Mikdash of Above. Or that the physical Mikdash will descend from Heaven but the doors or gates that are sunk in the ground will rise and be revealed and stand in their places, and the erecting of the doors are considered as if they built it).

According to this, we find that in the Future Temple there is a need for both aspects – the aspect that it is “the building of G-d” as well as that it will be make through the hands of man, King Moshiach.

The point of the explanation here is that the main innovation of the Third Temple is that it will be an  eternal House, not like the First and Second Temples. Therefore, it needs to the “building of G-d” and not the building of a person, who has no eternality (as is explained in the Zohar there). However, on the other hand, the eternality of the Mikdash must (also) be as it is according to the confines of nature. Therefore this eternal establishment below is through the deeds of man, for then the eternality is like it is from the perspective of the “building of G-d” which is established also (the confines of) nature.

5. One could say that just as this pertains to the building of the Temple, so too is it also in this that the Future Mikdash shown to each and every Jew. For in this there is a glimmer of these two aspects: the “building of G-d” and the handiwork of man (and they are alluded to in the two expressions “shown . . from afar, as will be explained).

When it says: “A term of vision that is shown to each and every Jew“, the intent is not that just on Shabbat Chazon, is the Future Temple in a manner of being seen by everyone"(for then he would have written “each person sees it, and it is simple that one is able to see it, and so forth) but rather that “he is shown it”. In other words, that the seeing comes not due to the person himself, but rather it is the deed of the one who shows it to him. For this seeing comes from Above, similar to that which the building is the “building of G-d”.

And this is the innovation of this seeing versus the seeing of the Shechinah in the first and second temples:

In the first and second Mikdash, even though Bnei Yisroel ascended on the pilgrimage to the festival and offered Korbanot in the Mikdash, and saw the revelation of the Divine Presence through the ten miracles that were performed for our ancestors. For it is simple that all this brought the fear of G-d (and certainly and it is a kal v’chomer from this that the ascending itself to Yerushalayim to eat the Ma’aser Sheini brought one to yirat shamayim, for he saw the great sanctity and the kohanim that engaged in Avodat HaShem directed his heart more to the fear of Heaven, to the study of Torah as is expounded in the Sifri for the sake that one should learn to fear, Ma’aser Sheini is great in that it brings one to study before he stands in Yerushalayim until he eats his Ma’aser Sheini, and he sees that they all are dealing with the work of heaven and in Avodat HaShem, he also directs his heart to the fear of heaven and study of Torah) – this seeing is what Bnei Yisroel saw and were awakened to have fear of heaven. And in the third Beit HaMikdash this will be in a manner that “ “, that G-d shows him

The difference between something that a person sees himself versus being shown a thing from Above is both in quantity and quality:

  • When a person sees something himself he does not see all the details of the thing, but rather what he can see of his own power.
  • Whereas when he is shown something, he is able to see the whole thing. Moreover, when the seeing is through the person’s power, the perception of the thing is according to the manner of his abilities and senses, and he does not perceive the matter as it is. Whereas when one is shown the thing, it is not according to the measure of the person’s grasp but rather according to the limit of what he is being shown.

Similarly, this is the case with regard to the two Temples:

In the First and Second Temples, Bnei Yisroel “saw” by themselves, the revelation. And since it is the sight of a created being, it is not the revelation of Godliness of the Mikdash, as it is. For a created being is not able to see and perceive from godliness except in a limited manner, according to human measurements and boundaries. Whereas regarding the Future Mikdash, where it is shown to every Jew, this is not according to the level and ability of the created being, but rather, this is the Mikdash itself, because the Holy One, blessed be He, shows Him, and this matter is lofty, for it is not relative to that a created being is able to see and perceive.

For this reason, seeing the revelations in the First Temple and the Second Temple and the Avodah at that time did not influence that the conduct of Bnei Yisroel in the path of righteousness should be like "second nature" in their souls, the aspect of eternity. Specifically seeing the Future Temple possesses the power to effect that their conduct should be in the proper path.

For the seeing and the Avodah of Yisroel in the First and Second Temples is only the vision and Avodah work of a created being. And since he is measured and limited and subject to change, even his Avodah with boundary and it is impossible for it to be eternal. Whereas seeing the Future Temple, this effects, from G-d’s perspective. therefore specifically it has the power to effect that the conduct in the upright path will become like second nature.

6. However, nevertheless, since all this is from the perspective of him being shown from Above, and not due to the person from below, we find that from the condition of Bnei Yisroel itself, seeing the Mikdash does not influence him in an eternal manner.

(And this is similar to what is explanation in many places, with regard to the various announcements that are proclaimed from Above, in order to awaken the person to repentance. For this is though the soul, that is above hears the heavenly voice (Bat Kol) and by hearing it Above, it is drawn down and is felt even in the soul that is below, as it states: “although he does not see it, his mazal sees it”.

 Therefore, we see that when it suddenly falls into a person, thoughts of Teshuvah without any preparation or contemplation on his part - which is explained by that which it comes not from the person below, who awakens himself to do Teshuvah on his own, but rather it is due to the awakening from Above (isaruta d;leila), that this awakening does not remain with the person.

And this is what is meant from the precise wording of the saying that " from afar”. For even though he is shown the Future Temple, the person must feel that it is “afar”. And the Avodat HaAdam must be to contemplate this itself, namely that he is being shown the Future Temple, yet he, alone, is far from it. and this causes within him a movement of bitul/nullification until, through this, he becomes a "vessel", that he is able to feel and to receive in his being, the effluence from Above

Ac to this one can also explain, the relation to the aspect of Shabbos Chazon as it is literally, which is according to the beginning of the haftarah, "the vision of Yeshayahu". For visibly he is the one who "foresaw Yehuda and Yerushalayim etc." matters that are the opposite of salvation and consolation, for the revelation of the vision of the Future Temple, comes through a feeling of distance, that is explained in the Haftorah of Shabbat Chazon. For this effects the closeness of “ “, the seeing of the Mikdash in the Future will not be from afar, but rather, from close up.

7. According to all of the aforementioned, one can explain the special virtue in seeing the Future Temple when Shabbat Chazon occurs on the day of Tisha B’Av itself. For then, in addition to that which each Jew is shown the Future Temple, the virtue of the revelation that is from Above, since on that day our righteous Moshiach is born and stands ready to redeem Israel and build the Temple in its place – this adds to the giving of power to man’s Avodah with regarding ard to the Future Temple, that it should not be in a form of "remoteness" but rather in a manner of closeness, and actual closeness (), that is connected to the person’s being.

And through this, the Beit HaMikdash will descend and be revealed below, mamosh, to each and every one . and may it be His will that we merit this on Shabbat Chazon of this year, mamosh. And specifically since the acronym of this year is “this year shall be a year where I will show you wonders” (), namely that G-d, Himself, will show – “I will show” to each Jew wonders, of the true and complete Geulah, that “As in the days of your Exodus from the land of Egypt, I will show him wonders”, immediately and instantly, mamosh ().

MSichas Shabbat Parshat Devarim 5747-8

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