“Whoever prays in this place, in Jerusalem, it is as if he has prayed before the Heavenly Throne. For the gateway to heaven is there and the doorway is open for prayers to be heard. ” Pirke D’Rabbi Eliezer (chapter 35)
Ever since the destruction of our Holy Temple by the Romans over 2000 years ago, the Jewish People have mourned its destruction and pray daily for the rebuilding of the third and final Temple in Jerusalem. We pray for redemption from our long and bitter exile. We long for a time when pain and suffering will be distant memories, and the knowledge of Hashem will permeate every corner of the universe.
The pivotal feature of the future world will be the Holy Temple, the Beit Hamikdash in Jerusalem. Mount Moriah, the place on which it will stand has been its destined home since the creation of the universe. It will stand in alignment to, and emanate from, the Heavenly Temple which exists as its spiritual counterpart. The earthly Temple will be, as described by the Ramchal, “the channel through which blessing and prosperity will flow to all levels of creation”. It will be “the dwelling place for the Divine Presence, a sign for all humanity of G-d’s presence in the world”.
The Beit Hamikdash stands at the centre of Jerusalem, Jerusalem at the centre of the Land, and the Land of Israel at the centre of the world. The “foundation stone” of the earthly Temple, situated beneath the site of the Holy of Holies, is the point of emanation of the entire universe. At the heart of the Beit Hamikdash stood the Holy of Holies, encasing the Keruvim atop the holy Aron. This is the pathway through which all prayer arises to heaven and through which all blessing is sent from above. It is the “spiritual womb” of the universe through which all else is sustained and nourished, the gateway between heaven and earth.
In my work I have endeavored to ignite our longing for the time of Mashiach and the world of the third Temple. Through images in glorious colour, in line, in light and shadow, may we be inspired to glimpse beyond the material into hidden spiritual worlds, and through intense focus on dreaming the future dream of our people, may we each play our part in bringing it to fruition.