Trumah: Chapter 51

The food of the souls


The mule-driver from previous sections says that the merit gained from a person's table in this world enables him to eat at another table of delight in the world to come. There is a table there because food and pleasure are eaten by the souls in that world just as the ministering angels eat. The supernal angels eat manna, the food that comes from the dew of the world above, a food from the light of the Holy Anointing Oil itself. The souls of the righteous are nourished from thence in the Garden of Eden, and there also they become clothed. During Shabbat and Festivals, the souls take off their garments and ascend to see the glory of their Master. He next explains the meaning of, "And it shall come to pass, that every new moon, and every Shabbat, shall all flesh come to bow down to the ground before Me,' says the Creator."

The rabbis ask the mule-driver his name, which is Chanan. Finally, they all stop at the next village, which is also named Chanan, and they sit down at table blessed with the words of Torah.


The spiritual foundation upon which we build our life determines our place of standing in the world to come. A life devoted to the procurement of spiritual assets, as opposed to the material kind, reaps untold pleasures in the world to come.

This simple truth holds true in this world as well. Indulging our avaricious impulses, while neglecting the needs of our soul, spawns a future of difficulty, a tomorrow built of despair, a destiny born of darkness. The building blocks of spirituality are erected here, ingrained into our being, so that we eat foods of indescribable delights in the Garden of Eden.