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The Energies of Parashat Terumah: the Mishkan

The weekly portion of Terumah could be read as a set of builder's blueprints for the Mishkan, with detailed and not necessarily interesting technical instruction on the materials, sizes, and construction of the various aspects of the Mishkan and it implements. This would be true if we were to see the Mishkan in physical terms, and ignore both its energies and the process by which it came to be. Our usual habit of seeing physical things and taking that as what they are would support this approach, but the Resonating~Torah makes it clear to us that to ignore the energies and the process of the Mishkan means to miss the essence of what the Mishkan is about.

The second verse of the portion specifies clearly the source of anything related to the Mishkan: the willing heart of a person. The foundation of the Mishkan is not wise thoughts or hard labor, but rather the foundation of the Mishkan is "asher yidvenu libo" which Rashi tells us is the language of good will. The energies of the Mishkan and all its aspects is the good will of the heart, and those energies are then transmitted and waiting to be felt by anyone who approaches the Mishkan or even considers the Mishkan.

The importance of the energies of what we relate to as things is found in many places. For example when asked how to make a perfect Samurai sword the Samurai master replied "first you must follow your own nature". Finding our own energies amid the noise-energies of daily life often requires a change in our way of sensing, either through intentional action such as meditation/mindfulness or through imposed conditions such as MCI. The Resonating~Torah starts its description of the Mishkan with the energies that go into the Mishkan, and this is the first thing we should take out of its description of the Mishkan.

Similarly the process by which the Mishkan resonates with the Jewish people is clarified in this portion of the Resonating~Torah. Verse 8 lays out the two resonating bodies, and the sequence of resonating, with crystal clarity: the Jewish people will make the Mishkan using the energies mentioned earlier, and then Hashem will live in our midst. The Mishkan does not come to impose good energies but rather to channel the energies that are generated by the Jewish people. This process can be visualized as we consider the Resonating~World: just as one tuning fork is the source and passes energies to the other, so we are the source of the energies and put them together in such a way that Hashem will live among us.

May the Portion of Teruma, uplifting, uplift all of us in our energies, in our feelings, and in our actions so make our world a Mishkan.


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