SklarO World Tela Pip Danny
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Tuesday, July 27, 2004
Thoughts on Tisha B'Av
Today is Tisha B’Av, the saddest day on the Jewish calendar. It is the end of the “Three Weeks”. Tisha B’Av is similar to Yom Kippur in that we are not supposed to eat, drink, wash ourselves, or where leather. There are also those who have stricter Minhagim(Customs), where they don’t get haircuts, have sex, or listen to music. Even when it comes to learning Torah there are prohibitions, we are only allowed to study certain portions of Torah and Talmud.
I remember Tisha B’Av as being the “second most important fast day” next to Yom Kippur in my house.
Last year, Yom Kippur was the first time that I have ever completely fasted for the duration of the fast. I have never been a good faster, or really gave enough of a shit to even try. I remember one Yom Kippur when I was about 13 or 14, me and a guy from Shul left during davening to go home and eat a pint of ice cream each. Another Yom Kippur, 3 years ago I think, my brother in law and I went to lou malnatis and had a big fucking Chicago style deep dish pizza.
Yesterday I started thinking about Tisha B’Av. What’s it all about? Why should I fast? Who gives a shit? Growing up in a house that has always been religious and always going to religious schools, all of the Jewish traditions and Ashkenazi customs are a part of me. I never learned Why? WHY? Why do we do these things? What are they about? What do the prayers mean? I am no longer doing things blindly. I am very interested in one day being observant, but not until I can get some questions answered.
So today I decided to find out a little about Tisha B’Av. The only thing that I knew before today was that Tisha B’Av was the day that the first temple was destroyed.
1. The sin of the spies caused Hashem to decree that the Children of Israel who left Egypt would not be permitted to enter the land of Israel;
2. The first Temple was destroyed;
3. The second Temple was destroyed;
4. Betar, the last fortress to hold out against the Romans during the Bar Kochba revolt in the year 135, fell, sealing the fate of the Jewish people.
5. One year after the fall of Betar, the Temple area was plowed.
6. In 1492, King Ferdinand of Spain issued the expulsion decree, setting Tisha B'Av as the final date by which not a single Jew would be allowed to walk on Spanish soil.
7. World War I – which began the downward slide to the Holocaust – began on Tisha B’av.
Wow. That’s a lot of bad shit. Unfortunately, I don’t really feel all that sad about the destruction of our temples. I guess I don’t really know enough about the era to feel anything. I feel much more sadness when a synagogues are burnt to the ground by Nazi scum in France or arab scum in Jericho.
I am very confused by the Jewish fast days.
Rabbi Akiva (who was a B'al T'shuvah and great scholar)was also brutally tortured murdered along with his students on this day. Rabbi Yishmael was also tortured & killed. Check out this poem http://bangitout.com/archive135.htmlAlso, the Beit HaMikdash served as a place where the Jews could be one with G-d. Communication couldn't get any better than that.
Its a sad day when G-d takes away and says "I don't want to hear you". Thats kinda what Eicha is about.
posted by roy
: 3:29 PM
Rabbi Akiva was a Ger Tzedek - both of his parents were gerim, thus making him a ger.
Oh yeah, thats right. My bad. Thanks.
posted by roy
: 3:18 PM
posted by roy
: 3:18 PM