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“They shall make a Sanctuary for Me, so that I shall dwell among them.” (25:8)

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A popular Yiddish maxim which is often related to a young couple who has become engaged or married is: “Der zivug zol oleh yafeh zein,” “The zivug, couple, union, should be good.” The word “oleh” has a number of definitions. The popular translation is “go up,” which would connote that “things should work out well for the young couple.” There are always “issues” when a young couple unite: personal, family, material. We hope that in due time, the situation will be a good one. The Satmar Rebbe, z.l., applied another definition of the word “oleh,” using gematria, numerical equivalent/value. We ask in Hebrew, “Kamah zeh oleh?” How much does this cost?” This means, “What is the value/monetary equivalent of this object?” Likewise, when one says, “The zivug should be oleh yafeh,” he is, in turn saying, “The zivug should have a gematria of yafeh,” which is ninety-five. What is the significance of the number ninety-five? The Rebbe says that if we were to look at the minyan ha’mitvos, number/order of the 613 mitzvos, number 95 is the mitzvah of building a Sanctuary, a place holy enough where the Shechinah will repose. That is the hope for the marriage of a young couple. They should build a bayis ne’eman b’Yisrael, a home that is holy, that is virtuous, that is a credit to Klal Yisrael. What greater manifestation of “yafeh” is there than this?

Let us extend this exegesis further. Regarding the injunction to build a Mikdash, the Torah says, “V’shochanti b’socham,” “I may dwell among them.” The Torah should have said, “b’socho,” “in it.” Why does it say in them? This teaches us that Hashem will reside in the heart of every Jew who permits Him to enter. Commensurate with our nedivus ha’lev, heartfelt motivation and contribution, He will reside in the Mishkan we build for Him in our own hearts. Every Jew has the opportunity and ability to become a Mishkan for Hashem. Ramban explains that the Mishkan should reflect the glory of Hashem that was demonstrated and felt by all at the Revelation on Har Sinai. As Hashem’s Glory rested on and emanated forth from Har Sinai, so, too, should the Mishkan be the repository and exemplar of this glory. It is to be a continuation of Har Sinai. It spurs the emotion and awe, the feeling of closeness with the Almighty that was experienced at Har Sinai.

Marriage should be like that. When there is harmony in a home, Hashem rests His Name on that home. He is a part of that relationship. This should be manifest. When one looks at the home, we should see the Shechinah’s Presence reflected throughout. It should be a home where the Shechinah would want to repose, where He would want His Name represented. We wish the young couple that they establish a relationship, a home that is a veritable Mishkan, that reflects Har Sinai, that will serve as yet another link in the chain of transmission of Torah from Har Sinai. This is the Torah’s definition of a beautiful home.

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