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The great mysteries of Shabbat and Olam Haba.

Why is Shabbat connected to Olam Haba (afterlife) and how?

  • Is it because the afterlife is a place of rest from creative work?
  • Is it because there will be one day of rest in Olam Haba?
  • How is Mashiach connected to Shabbat?

In the Mishnah, Rabbi Yaakov says: "This world is like a lobby before the Olam Ha-Ba. Prepare yourself in the lobby so that you may enter the banquet hall." (Pirkei Avot 4:21)

Similarly, the Talmud says: "This world is like the eve of Shabbat, and the Olam Ha-Ba is like Shabbat".

So why is Shabbat connected to Olam Haba and how?

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    It might seem that I am talking about more then one question,but Im trying to bring light to this question by adding other questions.To try to explain where Im going with one question. – Aigle Jan 16 '16 at 23:40
  • @Eagel the question How is Mashiach connected to Shabbat? is disconnected from the rest of your questions, maybe you want to edit it out. Otherwise I tried to help format the question and give a first answer – mbloch Jan 17 '16 at 4:42
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    This question could be improved by providing a reason why you think the two might be related. Even if this is just something you heard, indicating so, and esp. where you heard it would be useful. – mevaqesh Jan 17 '16 at 6:25
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Just as Shabbat is a day of rest and delight after a week of hard work, so is Olam Haba a time of rest and delight after a lifetime of hard work.

After we work all week and prepare for Shabbat, on Shabbat itself we rest, enjoy the world Hashem created (without interfering with it), delight from Shabbat-specific activities (nicer meals, great company, increased Torah study) and benefit from all the work done during the week.

Similarly the Olam Haba is a world of rest, delight and enjoyment from a life of work. During all our life we work to perform mitzvot, sanctify the name of Hashem, change the world for the better and improve our neshama (soul). In Olam Haba our neshama will rest (since it cannot perform any work) and reap the rewards from all this work by enjoying closeness to Hashem. This is the meaning of the quote from Pirkei Avot in your question (which incidentally is not directly related to Shabbat but at our entire life).

A wonderful and highly readable book expanding on these ideas is Stop Surviving, Start Living by R Ben Tzion Shafier


PS. I couldn't find your other quote This world is like the eve of Shabbat, and the Olam Ha-Ba is like Shabbat - I think it is paraphrased from Avoda Zara 3a

Whoever toiled on the eve of Shabbat will eat on Shabbat but whoever did not toil on the eve of Shabbat -- from where will he eat on Shabbat?

which Rashi interprets to mean that whoever performed mitzvot in this world will be rewarded in the olam haba

  • See also the Maharal on eruv tavshilin (possibly in Netzach Yisrael?) – Loewian Jan 17 '16 at 6:22
  • mbloch : Thank you.I wonder if you know of any free audiobooks you can recommend? Thank you once again. – Aigle Jan 17 '16 at 19:56
  • @Eagel I am very good with real books and very bad with audio ones. I don't listen to any. Sorry. But why don't you ask this as a question? but start here as you might find the answer in there already. Best of luck. – mbloch Jan 17 '16 at 20:33

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