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Tisha b’Av

Tisha b’Av 5778 – Fasting and Brokenness

July 22, 2018
broken world

As I write this, Tisha b’Av has just started here in Denver, Colorado where I’m hanging out at the moment. I thought about going to the synagogue for the traditional recitation of Eicha, Lamentations, but even from a distance I just can’t connect with the words of Eicha, and the imagery of Jerusalem destroyed,...
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Devarim 5776 – Tisha b’Av and Geopolitics

August 14, 2016
The Third Temple

On this day, 2,602 years ago, the Temple in Jerusalem was destroyed for the first time. On this day, 1,946 years ago, the Temple was destroyed for the second time. On this day, 1,883 years ago, the Romans crushed the Bar Kochba revolt at Betar, outside Jerusalem. On this day, 524 years ago, King...
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Tisha b’Av 5775 – Feast or Fast?

July 24, 2015
Destruction of Jerusalem

Every year on Tisha b’Av I struggle with a sense of cognitive dissonance between the traditional liturgy and the reality I see around me as a resident of Jerusalem. On Saturday night my community will gather at the Haas Promenade, and with an eye on the lit up, golden, Dome of the Rock, the...
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Tisha b’Av 5774 — Why I’m Fasting Today

August 6, 2014
Tisha b’Av 5774 — Why I’m Fasting Today

Today is Tisha b’Av, the 9th day of the Jewish month of Av, the saddest day on the Jewish calendar. The Mishnah says five disasters occurred on this date:         The twelve spies came back with their report on the land Israel, and ten of them had a negative report that...
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Tisha b’Av 5773

July 16, 2013
Tisha b’Av 5773

Planning a family vacation that over Tisha b’Av is perhaps not the most felicitous planning. But various other commitments led to this being the only real option, and so it is for the first time since 2007 I find myself marking the most somber day on the Jewish calendar – the day when we...
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A prayer for Tisha b’Av

July 26, 2012
A prayer for Tisha b’Av

I can’t say the traditional prayers on Tisha b’Av. How can I say prayers that talk of “the city laid waste, despised and desolate. In mourning for she is childless, her dwellings laid waste, despised in the downfall of her glory and desolate through the loss of her inhabitants….”? I live in Jerusalem, the...
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