Tuesday, July 20, 2010

9th Day of Av

The saddest day in Judaism.

The 9th day of Av (Tisha B'Av) begins at sundown tonight until sundown Tuesday night.  It is one of the 2 full fast days in Judaism (the other being Yom Kippur).  From sundown to sundown no food or water can be taken (There are exceptions for the ill, the young, the old, and pregnant women.).  Tisha B'Av marks the end of the 3 weeks of mourning.
Tisha B'Av is the culmination of a three week period of increasing mourning, beginning with the fast of the 17th of Tammuz, which commemorates the first breach in the walls of Jerusalem, before the First Temple was destroyed. During this three week period, weddings and other parties are not permitted, and people refrain from cutting their hair. From the first to the ninth of Av, it is customary to refrain from eating meat or drinking wine (except on the Sabbath) and from wearing new clothing.

The restrictions on Tisha B'Av are similar to those on Yom Kippur: to refrain from eating and drinking (even water); washing, bathing, shaving or wearing cosmetics; wearing leather shoes; and engaging in sexual relations. Work in the ordinary sense of the word is also restricted. People who are ill need not fast on this day. Many of the traditional mourning practices are observed: people refrain from smiles, laughter and idle conversation, and sit on low stools.

In synagogue, the book of Lamentations is read and mourning prayers are recited. The ark (cabinet where the Torah is kept) is draped in black.
On Tisha B'Av every horrible thing has happened to the Jewish People.  Here is a short listing of them (Hat tip to Yid With Lid):
The First Temple was destroyed.

The Second Temple was destroyed.

Bar Kokhba's revolt against Rome failed.

In 1290 King Edward I expelled the Jews from England.

In 1492 the deadline for Jews to leave Spain, Convert or Die.

The beginning of WWI –which lead directly to the rise of Hitler.

1941 Hermann Göring ordered SS general Reinhard Heydrich to make all the necessary preparations for the Final Solution.

The first transports reached Treblinka and the extermination of the Jews of the Warsaw Ghetto began on July 23, 1942, Tisha B'av.

In 1955 El Al Flight 402 was shot down over Bulgarian airspace on the 8th of Av.

The AMIA Bombing (Asociación Mutua Israelita Argentina) by terrorists in Buenos Aires, Argentina, which killed 86 and wounded more than 120, was on July 18, 1994, the 10th of Av.

In 2004, Barack Obama Gave the Keynote speech at the Democratic Convention on Tisha B'av and was crowned the heir apparent of the Democratic Party. He just might prove to be the most anti-Israel President ever.

The Disengagement from Gaza began on the 10th of Av 2005, leading to years of rocket bombardment from Hamas.

On the 17th of Tammuz in 2009 (the day the walls of Jerusalem were breached leading to the destruction of the Temple) US President Barack Obama called on Israel to give up its claims to the most holy part of the City.

The Week of Tisha B'av in 2009 President Obama sent four representatives to Israel, pressuring her to stop settlement construction, and not to attack a country (Iran) dedicated to destroy her before it becomes a nuclear power.
People have wondered why Israel hasn't tried to remove the Iranian threat these last 3 weeks.  Why take the chance of failure during the mourning period.  The wait of a few weeks will not hurt their chances of success.

Some tips of helping you with the fast:
Consulting a doctor before fasting. People with kidney problems, heart conditions, arteriosclerosis, problems with the coronary arteries, cancer, and recipients of kidney, heart or liver transplants should continue to take their medications as usual or risk worsening their conditions.

Pregnant women in the third trimester should not fast,

People who fast should try to remain in shaded and air conditioned places. The high temperatures expected throughout the US Tuesday mean that there is a heightened risk of dehydration. The first signs that the bodily systems are adversely affected because of lack of fluids are headaches and blurry vision. More advanced signs are difficulty in passing urine and, in some cases, pain indicating a kidney stone.

During the day that precedes the fast, large amounts of fluids should be taken in. Immediately before the fast, one should drink at least 1½ liters of liquid but limit the intake of caffeine, which is present in coffee, cocoa, cola and tea. Sweet drinks that increase thirst should be avoided, as should salty food like pickled vegetables and salted nuts. Complex carbohydrates with proteins and vegetables are recommended for those wishing to delay the onset of hunger.

Breaking the fast should be done with a light meal.

Tisha B'Av The Root of Destruction

To Be Rebuilt Soon!

Scroll down for newer posts.


WomanHonorThyself said...

stunning overview..easy and meaningful fast to all those commemorating!!

at the edge said...

There's one more very important one that happened in 2005 (or was it 2006?), and that is the day they destroyed and uprooted thousands of families, many 3rd generation residents, from their homes and property in the Gaza Strip - to hand it over on a silver platter to Israel's worst enemies, on the failed belief that this move would bring peace to the region, which it didn't. It only exacerbated the tensions there, and the poor folk that were robbed of their lifes works, livlihoods, lifestyle and peace of mind - they left for the birds. This was to take place of the 9th of Av, only in effect it went forth the day after.

at the edge said...

Woops - I noticed you DID make mention of it. Then let me add this - that on that day (9th of Av), in Tel-Aviv, on a day when you'd think people in the HOLY LAND would take on a serious mindset, Tel-Aviv sponsored "Beer Day" at the beaches, a large bash of youngsters to have fun at the beach. In fact that year, they extended the fun for two nights instead of one, from the night before.

On that 9th of Av, as a guest at a relative's house, I was going through the channels to see what my children could watch, to relieve their boredom.

One program started out innocently enough. It was in a cave under the temple mount, a 30-year old began relating some historical facts. Wow, I thought, that looks like something educational for them to see. But then he bagan to speak about a "King Yehoshua" and my hairs began to stand on edge. It turns out that this "archeological documentary" was nothing more than a Jews for J program - for children - on the Children's Channel - in the Holy Land - on the holy day of Tisha B'av - at a time when Jews were also mourning the upcoming uprooting of Gaza and delivering it to those who wanted to murder us. Such is the face of our Holy Land today...

Anonymous said...

No pains, no gains.......................................................................