Beshalach: Chapter 24
"Who is like You among the mighty, Hashem"
Synopsis

Rabbi Shimon speaks of a great, strong, supernal tree that sustains those above and those below. The seventy branches are the seventy princes that are appointed over the seventy nations of the world; when their time of dominion arrives, they want to destroy the trunk of the tree that rules over the children of Yisrael. On the other hand, when the domination of the trunk reaches them, it wants to guard them and to arrange peace among them all. It is said that this is like the Holy One, blessed be He, who guards everything and does not want to destroy the nations completely as they had wanted to do when they dominated.

Rabbi Yosi turns to the verse, "I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and behold, all is vanity and a striving after wind." In a dialogue with Rabbi Shimon, we learn that a man's good deed turns into a breath that becomes an advocate before God, but that his bad deed turns into a breath that breaks his spirit. The holy breath from the good deed leads the person when his soul leaves him, and raises him to the place of glory above, and is present to bind him in the bond of life. Rabbi Shimon says that when the Temple was first built below it was based on Judgment and Anger, but in the time to come God shall perfect it in a different, higher level called 'righteousness.'