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Breslav Shabbat

What is the special connection between Shabbat and saving life?  Rav Nachman of Breslav explains that it is because Shabbat draws all its meaning from the Jewish people who observe it.  The Shabbat is called a gift given to the Jewish people (this is one of the reasons the Talmud gives for suspending it in face of danger), and is also called the bride of Israel.  The death of a Jew thus diminishes the splendor of Shabbat no less than does the performance of melakha.  Rav Nachman goes so far as to say the death of a Jew is itself a “chilul Shabbat” – a desecration of the Sabbath! “Desecration” means literally a diminishment of the sacred, and that is what occurs when Israel is less able to sanctify the Shabbat because of a death (Likutei Halakhot Shabbat 7:11

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