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“That” Day

We all have one of those; the day that you fear and dread. For some, it’s “That” appointment with the dentist.  For others, there’s “That” day when you have your visit to your local Traffic Court Judge.  And then there’s always “That” day, April 15th, when taxes are due.

The Jewish people also have a “That” Day.  It’s called Tisha B’Av (which means the Ninth day of the Hebrew month of Av) and it occurs this year on Tuesday, July 20th.

What qualifies it as a “That” Day?  Here are just a few things that happened on that day over the millennia:

The destruction of the First Temple in Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon in 586 BCE.
(The Temple was the site where the Jewish people used to gather three times each year, on Passover, Shavuot and Succoth, as well as on the High Holy Days of Jewish New Year {Rosh Hashanah} and the Day of Atonement {Yom Kippur}. It is where the Holy of Holies was located that housed the Tablets of the Ten Commandments that were brought down from Mount Sinai by Moses. It was the seat of the Jewish High Court, the Sanhedrin, and was the center of spirituality and holiness).

The destruction of the Second Temple (same as the First) in Jerusalem by the Romans in 70 CE.
Pope Urban II declared the First Crusade.
The Jews of England were expelled in 1290.
The Jews of Spain were expelled in 1492. (Christopher Columbus set sail for America the following day).
World War I broke out in 1914 when Russia declared war on Germany.
Deportation began of the Jews from the Warsaw Ghetto.

With all of these terrible tragedies occurring on the same day, you would think that we should stop and take notice.
We do.

Beginning Monday night, right before sundown, we begin a fast of just over 24 hours during which we are supposed to reflect on our unique history, ask ourselves what we can do to make this world a better place and thank G-d that we live today in peace and freedom.

Our Sages tell us that in the future, “This” day will be one of great celebration. (Even better than if your dentist told you, “Congratulations, no cavities!”)

May “That” Day come speedily in our time.

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Posted in: Jewish Holidays
by   Max Anteby

Comments icon July 16, 2010


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