For example, A well know incident recorded in Maseket Sukkot notes how Alexander Janneaus who was a Sadducee insisted on performing the "water libation" ceremony of Sukkot. However the King poured the water at the foot of the altar rather than on the altar. Thereupon the Rabbis pelted him with etrogim. Alexander, whom Josephus calls "the young lion" and whom according to the gemarah enjoyed eating herring on gold plates, ordered his police to execute 800 rabbis in one day for that pelting. When Alexander passed on his wife, Shalom Zion, (Salome) became Queen and reinstated the Pharisees over the Saducees to power. Salome was the sister of the Av bet Din, Shimon ben Shetah, mentioned in PA. Learn further for instance how Herod had his wife Miriam embalmed in honey after killing Miriam's priestly relatives, including her brother whom Herod ordered drowned in a swimming pool, covering up the assasination to look like an "accident." Herod built Masada largely as a place to escape to in case someone sought to assasinate him. Herod however was a great builder. He built the harbor of Caesarea out of Roman hydrolic concrete. Even the Rabbis confess, "that anyone who had not seen Herod's renovated Beit Hamikdash had not seen a beautiful building." Josephus notes that when the sun was up the light rebounded off the gold dome's of Herod's Temple, and reflected upon the painted blue marble (even shayeish) givining the illusion of "shimmering beautiful mediteranean sea waters." The white alabaster dome looked like Sheleg al har harmon according to Josephus. However when Rabbi Akiva in MS. Hagigah in the arba Sheniknasu biPardes incident, is said to reach the throne of Hashem, saying "al tamru mayim mayim" clearly the most simplistic peshat is that Rabbi Akiva who visited the Beit HaMikdash before the Roman Hurban, is referring to the phenomena (rebounding light on the pure painted blue marble) of Josephus' remark. A deeper interpretation however is that Rabbi Akiva is alluding to "mayim Rabbim" a phrase troped by Dovid HaMelekh in Sefer Shmuel, "Ani mi-mayim rabbim." Connecting the dots Hazal (MS. Hullin) note that the pure blue marble of Hashem's throne (just a mushal as the throne is incorporeal in the 7 heavens) relates to the blue in the Tzizit, corresponding to the Mediteranean sea, to the rakiah (blue sky), to the luchot which are that speial blue color. Much intrigue surrounds the Hellenized Kings of the second Temple tekufah.
HaBayit Sheni (2nd Temple) was destroyed via sinat hinam (baseless hatred), and according to some will be rebuilt through ahavat hinam. This rif attempts to show that Ahavas Hashem (an integrated key component in the interconnectedness of Ahavas Olam, Ahavas Torah) which Rambam holds is a higher madrega (level) for serving Hashem, than yirat Hashem, is the key by which to understand King David's prayer of thanks and love in Tehillim 19, whereby love of Hashem, love of torah, and love of of the world, are deeply connected in supplication to the rock and redeemer, hinting at the purpose of geulah (redemption) on the stage of human history constituted by the Beit HaMikdash, as illustrated in Rambam's Sefer Shoftim of the Mishneh Torah (MT.). This rif is based on integration of the remarks of Hazal in interpreting Tehillim 19, one of Dovid HaMelekh's prayers
During the 52 weeks of the year Levites served in the beit HaMikdash 2x per year or 2 sets of 24 rotations. The mishnah tamid describes how the Levites are rounded up from outlying towns in ancient Israel to the playing of musical instruments, and "brought up to Jerusalem" to serve in the rotations of priestly activities. During the course of the week the 24 hallot (show bread offerings or lechem panim) as per m.s. Yoma went from a marble table to a gold table to illustrate the principle of "raising up in kedushah". Levitical Priests (hakohanim haleveim) kept their own geneological records (sefer yichusin) in the archives on the Temple Mount, in order to serve in these 24 rotations of preistly Levitical circuits in the Beit HaMikdash thus revealing the importance of genealogy in antiquity as well as in Maseket Kiddushin.
In Maseket Berachot the question of when to recite the morning shema hinges on the phrase "when you can tell the blue threads from the white threads." This is a practical halakhic consideration echoing from the Beit HAMikdash that governs being kovea itim. Today poskim ask when should the shema be said in a space ship when the sun rises every hour, or in Scandaneivia when it is dark for extended periods. Techelet is used in the clothing of the High Priest, the tapestries in the Tabernacle, and the tassels ( ציצית ] affixed to the corners of one's four-cornered garment, such as the Tallit (garment worn during prayer, which the Midrash notes Hashem wrapped Himself in to create the world with the Torah blueprint.. This color is biblically based from— Numbers 15:37-39 and discussed in many rabbinic texts such as — Mishnat Rabbi Eliezer, ch. 14. & Midrash, Numbers 17:5 & — Sifre, Shelach, 15:39. The dye of Tekhelet was produced from a marine creature known as the Ḥillazon/Chilazon). According to the Tosefta (Men. 9:6), the Ḥillazon is the exclusive source of the dye. Recently Rabbi Leiner after the 1858 the French zoologist Henri de Lacaze-Duthiers found that three Mediterranean mollusks produced purple-blue dyes [One, Murex trunculus] published two books to counter the strong opposition from other Torah scholars who did not agree with his conclusions .
Esoterically Maseket Hagigah 12b-14b testifies that Rabbi Akiva in the arba sheniknasu biPardes, went up to the 7th heaven and said "al tamru mayim mayim." Josephus gives a clue to uncover a basic peshat level of Rabbi Akiva's cryptic remark. Rabbi Akiva had witnessed the Temple when it stood before the Romans destroyed this most holy place of sanctity and Josephus further notes that when the sun was up the light of the sun would rickochet off the painted blue marble (A Roman artistic and architectural invovation along with hydrolic concrete used to make the harbor in Caesarea) creating the illusion of shimmering beautiful blue waters, like the Mediterreanean sea. This relates to a sugya in Hullin that the blue threads of the tzizit make on think of the Medetareanan pure waters of blue, which make one think of the blue sky (the rakiah= firmament), which make one think of the throne of Hashem (kisei-ha-kavod- also according to the Midrash) this beautiful blue color. Today in Safed Rabbi Aboab's shul that contains a sefer torah from the explusion from Spain in 1492 employs blue paint for mystical reasons to beautify the synagogue. However the attached articles testify to the many intricate halakhic practical questions regarding identifying the true blue color that the priests (Kohanim) employed on the tzitzit garments, indeed when they could distinguish between the blue and white threads. These halakhic articles speak of the "ties that bind" with regard to the importance of Jewish law in a pratical sense in identification of the ancient techelet which the gemarah notes turned purple sometimes in sunlight. Today the Techelet institute has mapped the molecular structure of what some scientists identify as indigo in relation to techelet while others like Rabbi Herzog who wrote his dissertation on this subject identify with the dye produced from a snail in the Mediterranean. The debate goes on and the signficance includes practical halakhic considerations-criteria-analysis as well as cosmic esoteric mystical ramifications, as the Rashbi himself is said in the Bar Yochai mantra to have entered the Kodesh Kodeshim of pure blue stone (avnei shay-yesh). בַּר-יוחַאי, לִמְקום אַבְנֵי שַׁיִשׁ
הִגַּעְתָּ וּפְנֵי אַרְיֵה לַיִשׁ,
גַּם גֻּלַּת כּותֶרֶת עַל עַיִשׁ,
תָּשׁוּר וּמִי יְשׁוּרֶךָ.
In Haftorah Yetro, the navi Yeshayahu notes, "ve-habayit yimalei ashan" whereby the prophets theophany and vision of Hashem's merkavah take place in the Temple in Jerusalem which is filled with the Ketoret smoke and pleasing aroma etc. What the navi sees in this vision include 3 types of angels: seraphim, ofanim, ve hayaei HaKodesh. The navi's mouth is purified by a glowing coal echoing the midrash of why Moshe became a stutterer. The relevant focus for the library guide is that the vision of Isaiah of G-d's chariot takes place in the Beit HaMikdash in Jerusalem. As opposed to Yehezkeil's vision which took place upon a river in Bavel called the Chabar- which in reversal the Rambam notes in the Moreh Nevukhim spells: (1) baruch, (2) rachev (to ride), and (3) cherub etc
Between the period of the end of Pesah and Shavuot Jews engage in Sifrat Ha-Omer (counting the omer) which is rooted in an ancient agricultural ritual and practice noted in Leviticus and Devarim::
You shall count for yourselves -- from the day after the Shabbat, from the day when you bring the Omer of the waving -- seven Shabbats, they shall be complete. Until the day after the seventh sabbath you shall count, fifty days... -Leviticus 23:15-16
You shall count for yourselves seven weeks, from when the sickle is first put to the standing crop shall you begin counting seven weeks. Then you will observe the Festival of Shavu'ot for the L-RD, your G-d -Deuteronomy 16:9-10
Yet Sifrat Ha-Omer in Jewish mysticism is the blueprint for Ramban's understanding of Shmita ha-Olamot of the 50,000 history of the seven worlds where each world is 7000 years based on a pusek in Tehillim, "a thousand years in Hashem's sight are as yesterday" whereby each creation day alludes to 1000 years. The # 50 is intimately tied to the Yovel (Jubillee). During Sifrat Ha-Omer different manifestations of Hashem's pleromatic emenations known as the Sefirut are manifest in the worlds. Thus it is not accidental that Dovid HaMelekh's yahrzeit is on the 49th day of the omer corresponding to the emanation of malchut shebimalchut. Likewise the Rashbi's yahrzeit and accension to marry with the Shekhinah in Gan Eden is not accidentally the 33rd of the Omer or Lag B'Omer when the Sefirot emanations manifest as hod shebihod etc Makloket (debates) exist in the BT. concerning when to begin counting the Omer. The Pharisees disagreed with the Tzadukim. The Pharisees would harvest the Omer even if its counting fell on a Shabbat (see power point on Dead Sea Scroll Library Guide by DBL on differences between Pharisees, Sadducees, and Essenes in Halakhah)..
BT Maseket Yoma describes the details whereby the Kohen Gadol ritually designated the two goats effecting Atonement (Kapura/ Versunung) on Yom Kippur. In this BT tractate Yoma in part is the description whereby the Kohen Gadol is said to travel from booth to booth that were set up before arriving at the cliff where the goat for Azazel would be pushed off baMidbar. A miracle is said to occur when the red thread tied around one of the goat's horns "turned white." Commentators note the importance of this miraculous sign, rather than reasoning by the limits of human logic that the red thread turned white due to the bleaching effect of the sunlight etc (see Yom Kippur liturgy, Machzor).
The beit HaMikdash is the most important place for Jews in Jerusalem. As we await a Cyrus like power to allow its rebuilding we recall the holiness of this place and its architecture and why this place allows for kapara (Versunungstag) fuer die Judentum. this composition by DBL is from 1988 auf deutsch is an example of DBL's interest in Albeck's bilingual mishnah edition in Hebrew nad German, in this case particularly mishnayos middot. It is an instance of the Orthodox Wissenschaft des Judententum Bewegung (Science of Judaism Movement) of which orthodox scholars like Julius Preus (Biblische und Talmudische Medezin), Rabbi Yitchak Heinemann (Gottdienst in der Talmud), and Elbogen ( Der jüdische Gottesdienst in seiner geschichtlichen Entwicklung, Grundriß der Gesamtwissenschaft des Judentums / hrsg. von der Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Wissenschaft des Judentums ] taught by his uncle Rabbi Yakov Levy (author of the "Neuhebräisches Wörterbuch"). Zunz seminal work, Etwas über die rabbinische Litteratur (1818; “On Rabbinic Literature) and his zeitschrift 1822 to 1823, was monumental in the movement. Zunz and his collegues founded the Verein für Kultur und Wissenschaft der Juden (“Society for Jewish Culture and Science”) . Zunz’s Gottesdienstlichen Vorträge der Juden, historisch entwickelt (1832; “The Worship Sermons of the Jews, Historically Developed”) is a historical analysis of Jewish homiletical literature. Zunz played an important role in the editing of Nachman Krochmal's important work Moreh nevukhe ha-zeman which was published posthumously . Scholars like Moritz Steinschneider, and the Orthodox dr. Abraham Berliner [a Rashi expert) are dealt with in DBL's essay on Scholar Research librarians at http://databases.jewishlibraries.org/node/51186 also see Orthodox Reactions to “Wissenschaft des Judentums”, Assaf Yedidya, in MJ, 30:1, p.69-94