Beit Midrash

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To dedicate this lesson

Tying to Unite One’s Own Thoughts


Various Rabbis

Cheshvan 16 5779
Gemara: Where was tying done in the Mishkan [which would make it a melacha on Shabbat]? Rava said: They would tie things to the stakes that held the tent in place. Abaye said: That [is not a melacha,] as it is tying while having in mind to untie it [as the Mishkan was periodically moved]?! Rather, said Abaye: It was when the weavers of the fabric sheets, upon a thread being broken, would tie it up.

Ein Ayah: [The second piece relates to Abaye’s answer.]

The second type of tying is when separate components are united into one entity, in a manner that they complement each other. It is not a matter of movable parts being attached to a greater, set object, but it has to do with the connection between two similar movable parts. They must be connected in a manner that unites them, so that each one is not facing in a different direction, and so they will not be opposing and contradicting each other.

This situation has a parallel in the world of human ideas. A person sometimes has thoughts on matters of wisdom, ethics, and philosophies that have different natures. The thoughts, though, should fit one another. If it turns out at times that one of his ideas contradicts another one, so that one is cut off from the other, it is important to fix the contradictory idea. The thought should not be allowed to "fly in the wind." Therefore, the different ends need to be reattached.

To the extent that the partial thoughts remain, so too that which unites them remains. While a divine thought is connected to a person’s thought in a manner that it cannot remain tied, the different parts of a person’s own thought should remain connected. That is the philosophical idea behind the reattaching of a thread that came up in the weaving process in the production of the fabric for the Mishkan.
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