The Month of AV
When the summer comes, it's hard to remember that the Jewish holidays don't end with Shavuot.
In the month of Av, the Jewish people observe a different kind of day. Tisha B'Av commemorates the many disasters that have befallen the Jewish people throughout history.
Based on the writings of the biblical prophet Zechariah, Jewish tradition established four fast days of mourning throughout the year.
(Yom Kippur is not one of these days. It is a day of atonement and not of mourning.) According to Zechariah, the second fast day is to occur in the fifth month of the year, the month of Av. This day commemorates both the destruction of the First Temple, by the Babylonians in 586 BCE, and the Second Temple, by the Romans in 70 CE and is held on the ninth day of the month of Av, also known as Tisha B'Av.
Just six days after Tisha B'Av, on Tu B'Av, the fifteenth day of the month, Jews celebrate one of the loveliest, but unfortunately, one of the most forgotten, holidays of the Jewish year. According to tradition, the fifteenth of Av was the day on which the young women of Jerusalem would leave their work in the vineyards and search for a young man to marry. About Tu B'Av, the Rabbis wrote: "There has not been a better day for Israel (the Jewish people) than the fifteenth of Av" (Mishnah, Tractate Ta'anit 4:8).
The month of Av offers the Jewish people moments of commemoration and moments of celebration. As much as we should use Tisha B'Av to remember the calamities of Jewish history, we should use Tu B'Av to remember that the happier moments for the Jewish people can be just as powerful as the sad ones.
Join is for our 2nd annual, Tu B'Av dinner and dance on Thursday, Aug 17. It will be a fun night filled with music, singing and dancing. Fun for all!