Tu B’Av - a minor holiday and one of the happiest days of the year.
Most people don't really associate Tu B’Av with being a holiday, but the Gemara says that it is one of the happiest days of the year. The Gemara talks about it in conjunction with Yom Kippur.
There are many different reasons why Tu B'Av is one of the happiest days, but most commentaries never discuss how astrology effects it? There is a very interesting reason from an astrological point as to why Tu B'Av is such a happy and powerful day and the day of love.
First let me state that astrology is a part of Judaism, but the science of astrology is only used to gather information about the different energy that occurs every month. (Nissan is not the same as Tishrei etc.) The idea is to use this information to have a better month. Our behavior in one month should not be the same as the next month. Jewish astrology has nothing to do with telling the future, nobody can do that.
To give a little background, most of our knowledge about astrology comes from the book, Sefer Yitzerah written by Avraham Aveinu. Some say Rabbi Akiva wrote it but the main thing is the information.
In Jewish astrology, we use seven celestial bodies, five planets(Mars, Mercury, Venus, Saturn and Jupiter), the sun and the moon. The three furthest planets, Pluto, Uranus and Neptune are too far away to affect the physical world. They are connected to the spiritual world and correspond to the three upper Sefirot. Every month is connected to one of these seven celestial bodies. Each planet connects to two months(total 10), the sun and the moon only to one month, making a total of 12. (I have a chart of how this works if anybody is interested). Tammuz connects to the moon an Av to the sun.
Rosh Chodesh and the 15th of the month are the two most powerful days of the month besides Shabbat and the holidays. Rosh Chodesh is the seed of the month and inside the seed is the full potential of the month. If you look at a seed of an apple tree, you can imagine from that seed comes a big apple tree with beautiful fruit. The 15th of the month is full moon and is the total manifestation of the whole month. The 15th of the month is important in the calendar. Both Pesach and Sukkot begin on the 15th. We also have TuBishvat and Tu B'av and Purim is also connected to the 15th (Shushan Purim). From all this we see that the full moon is a very powerful time of the month.
The question to ask is what is special about the full moon of Av and why is it such a happy day and good for Shidduchim?
Every month on the 15th there is a zivug (unification) between the moon and the celestial body of that month. Ten months of the year, the zivug is between the planet of the month and the moon. Tammuz the zivug is between the moon and the moon and Av is the zivug between the sun and the moon. Why is this zivug in Av so special?
The sun and the moon are the perfect soul mates. In many of the writings, Jewish and non Jewish, there are many stories about how the sun and the moon go together. Their zivug is the perfect unification. The zivug on TuB'Av is the most powerful zivug of the whole year and this is why it is the day of love, because there is complete unity between the sun and the moon, like there should be between a man and a woman. When you have a zivug and unity like this anything is possible.
I saw it written somewhere, I don't have the source, but I think this is the reason Chazal chose this day as the day the girls of Israel would go into the fields all dressed in white and then the men would go and choose a bride. Tu B'Av is the perfect day for soul mates as the sun and moon are the perfect couple.
The energy is so powerful on this day that it does not only apply to a man and woman, it can also be a relationship between business partners, family and friends etc. Tu B'Av is the day to strengthen all relationships.
How do we do this?
Think about all your relationships and see which ones need fixing. Make a personal effort by phoning or writing to the person and just wishing them a good day and send them love.
Remember the saying from Mishlei, 27:19. “As water reflects a face to a face, the heart of a man to a man”.
Just like a face is reflected in water, so to are the feelings of one person reflected in another. Use this power of love. Send love to people. Do some extra Mitzvot, learn a little more, give some Tzedakah. Do something very special for your loved one as this is the real day of love. This is very important. We have a big opportunity to connect to this powerful day, don't miss out. After Tisha B’Av we need to fill ourselves with as much positivity as possible.
- Read more about Tisha B'Av here
- Index of Hebrew months of the year and the zodiac
- Index of the weekly Torah portion - Parshat Hashavua
- Shabbat and festival candle lighting times and blessings
Tu B'Av Dates
|2019||Sunset, 15 August –
nightfall, 16 August
|2020||Sunset, 4 August –
nightfall, 5 August
|2021||Sunset, 23 July –
nightfall, 24 July
Pearls of Life.
The Pearls of Life point out that when a fast day falls out on Shabbos [except Yom Kippur] the fast is pushed off until Sunday. Shabbos is the eternal bond between the Nation of Israel and Hashem. Shabbos keeps the world going and is its very foundation. The Nesivos Shalom brings the verse from the Torah portion in Terumah that we build a Mishkan [tabernacle] and later on, by extension the Beis Hamikdash. The verse says “Viasu”, which is written in plural. The Beis Hamikdash has to be constructed with the power of the whole Jewish Nation, not just individuals. “Sinas chinam” [baseless hatred], caused the Shechina [Hashem presence], to leave and as a result the Beis Hamikdash was destroyed. The Nesivos Shalom now teaches that when we push off a fast like Tisha Ba’av it is a message of hope that tells us that on Shabbos we are always connected to Hashem. Although there is no Beis Hamikdash right now, Shabbos reinforces the idea that the inner connection between Hashem and the Nation of Israel was never destroyed. We have to carry the message that we learned on Shabbos to be biachdus [together] with everybody, friends and family etc., even after Shabbos as the now pushed off fast reminds us of our loss.
Adopted from the lessons of Rabbi Yisroel Meir Shapiro by Yeshiva Pirchei Shoshanim
From Rav Makor and Rav Kalman
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