Tisha B’Av — Commemorating the 9th of Av

Monday night, July 31 at 8:00 pm — Minchah followed by ma'ariv and the chanting of Eichah (lamentations)
Fast begins at 8:18 pm

Tuesday morning, August 1 at 7:30 am — Shacharit services
Fast ends at 8:46 pm

If you are able to attend one or more of the minyanim/services, please let Rabbi Corey know at rabbi@peninsulasinai.org.


What is Tisha B'Av?
Tisha B'Av, the Fast of the Ninth of Av, is a day of mourning to commemorate the many tragedies that have befallen the Jewish people, many of which coincidentally have fallen on this day.  Primarily, Tisha B'Av commemorates the destruction of the first and second temples, the first by the Babylonians in 587/6 BCE and the second by the Romans in 70 CE.  The 9th of Av is the culmination of a three week period of increasing mourning, beginning with the fast of the 17th of Tammuz, which marks the first breach of the walls of Jerusalem before the First Temple was destroyed. In addition to the destruction of both Temples, many suggest that Tisha B'Av also coincides with the date when the 12 spies returned with a pessimistic outlook on the Land of Israel, the expulsion of the Jews from Spain in 1492, and the outbreak of World War I, which ultimately led to the tragedies of World War II and the Holocaust.  

What happens on the 9th of Av?
On Tisha B'Av, we commemorate the mourning by observing a 25 hour fast, beginning at sundown (Saturday night to Sunday).  Like Yom Kippur, we refrain from eating, drinking, bathing, anointing oneself (perfumes/lotions), wearing leather shoes (some say all leather), and sexual relations.  Traditionally, there is a practice to not engage in formal Torah study on Tisha B'av and instead, the Book of Lamentations is read and other books that fit the day are often studied such as the Book of Job.  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.  Many people refrain from strenuous work activities on Tisha B'Av, however, it is quite common for people to otherwise go about their days normally. 

May we all be comforted and receive comfort from God and one another during this difficult time of mourning.  Tzom Kal-An easy and meaningful fast to everyone.

Rabbi Corey Helfand