The Ethics of Tzimtzum – Rabbi David Kasher

March 13th, 2021 — Shabbat Vayakhel-Pekudei 5781

Embedded deep among all the very technical and repetitive instructions for building the Mishkan is the original source for an image used by Jewish mystics to explain how the world was created: The Tzimtzum, God’s great “contraction.” But the Tzimtzum is more than just a theological concept; it also forms an important model for ethical behavior, as we seek to imitate God in “contracting” to create space for someone else. And as we look closer at that original description of the Tzimtzum, we find that those ethics get complicated quickly.