This week at Azamra
18 Av 5781 / 27 July 2021

Torah Calendar

7-22 Menachem Av 5781
July 16-31, 2021

For this week's study schedule & classes, CLICK HERE

Attributes of the month of Av: Ruling permutation of the letters of HAVAYAH: KEH VAV YOD KEH, contained in the initial Hebrew letters of Haskeis Ushmo'a Yisrael Hayom... "...take heed and listen, O Israel, this day..." (Deut 27:9). The month's corresponding letter is: TET; Human attribute: HEARING; Body Part: LEFT KIDNEY ; Tribe: SHIMON; Constellation: ARYEH (Leo, the Lion).

Friday July 16 / 7 Av

Although some observe the prohibition of washing the entire body even on the eve of Shabbat during the Nine Days, many wash in warm water in honor of the Shabbat and put on their customary Shabbat clothes.

Friday night-Saturday July 16-17 / 8 Av
Shabbat CHAZON, Parshat DEVARIM
Eve of Tisha B'Av

Torah reading: Deuteronomy 1:1-3:22; Haftara: Isaiah 1:127 "The vision (Chazon) of Isaiah..." after which this Shabbat preceding the Fast of Tisha B'Av is named. The Lubavitcher Rebbe taught that on this Shabbat every Jew is granted a vision of the coming Temple while awake or asleep..

"Intent, focussed prayer on this Shabbat elevates the prayers of all the year, because the prayer of a poor person elevates all prayers to favor" (R. Uri of Strelisk). "This is the greatest Shabbat of the year" (The Oihev Yisrael of Apta).

It is permitted to eat meat and all delicacies at the Three Meals this Shabbat, but it is necessary to conclude all eating and drinking at the Third Meal prior to sunset on Shabbat afternoon, when the fast begins, though Zmirot and Birkhat HaMazon (grace) may be recited after sunset.
On Shabbat afternoon only the Torah subjects that are permitted on Tisha B'Av may be studied, i.e. laws of mourning, passages of reproof in Jeremiah, Job, etc. and works of Mussar and Chassidut that arouse us to Teshuvah.

Saturday night-Sunday July 17-18 / 9 Av
Fast of TISHA B'AV

The Fast of Tisha B'Av commemorating (1-2) The destruction of the First and Second Temples (3) The decree that the Generation of the Wilderness who listened to the evil report of the spies would not enter the Land of Israel (4) Capture and destruction of the city of Beitar after the failure of Bar Kochba's rebellion (5) Plowing of Jerusalem by the Romans. The expulsion of the Jews from Spain in 1492 also took place on Tisha B'Av.
Besides abstaining from eating and drinking, full mourning is observed today, including sitting on low chairs or on mats on the floor until after midday, and abstaining from washing, annointing, wearing shoes and marital relations.
After the evening service at the conclusion of Shabbat, Megillat Eichah (Lamentations) is read, followed by the recital of Kinot, mournful dirges about the destruction of the Temple and other tragedies.
Following the morning service Torah reading, lengthy Kinot are recited followed by the reading of Eichah. This takes up most of the morning until midday. Many visit Jewish graves on Tisha B'Av to rouse the souls of the dead to beg for mercy for us.
The fast ends after nightfall (Tzeit Hakochavim, appearance of the stars) on Sunday. It is customary to recite Kiddush Levanah, "Sanctification of the Moon" after the evening service after end of the fast.

Monday July 19 / 10 Av

The prohibitions against haircuts, washing, laundering and consumption of meat and wine are observed until midday today, since the fire that engulfed the Temple on 9 Av continued burning until the 10th.
Today is the anniversary of the birth and death of Issachar, son of Jacob and Leah.

Friday night-Saturday July 23-24 / 15 Av

Torah reading: Deuteronomy 3:23-7:11; Haftara: Isaiah 40:126, "Comfort ye (nachamu), my people...", first of the Seven Haftarot of Consolation read between Tisha BeAv and Rosh Hashanah.
The Fifteen of Av (Tu B'Av) is one of the holiest, albeit concealed festivals of the Torah calendar, marking the day when death ceased for the generation of the wilderness and also the reconciliation of the Tribes of Israel with the tribe of Benjamin (Judges 21:19; Ta'anit 30b). Today is particularly propitious for prayers for one's Zivvug -- marriage partner.
On Saturday night, after the end of Shabbat Nachamu -- announcing the coming redemption -- it is customary for those in the environs of Haifa, Israel to visit the Cave of Elijah on Mount Carmel.

From this point in the year onwards, the nights are becoming noticeably longer (in the northern hemisphere) and we should add to our Torah studies during the night-time hours because "a man learns most of his Torah wisdom only at night." (Rambam, Laws of Torah Study 3:13)

Tuesday July 27 / 18 Av

The 1929 Arab attacks on Jews in Jerusalem, Hebron, Safed and other parts of Israel resulting in the murder of 113 martyrs began on this day.

Thursday night and Friday July 29-30 / 21 Av

Yahrzeit of Rabb Aharon Rokeach, the Belzer Rebbe (1877-1957).

Friday night-Saturday July30-31 / 22 Av
Shabbat Parshat EIKEV

Torah Reading: EIKEV, Deuteronomy 7:12-11:25. Haftara: Isaiah 49:14-51:3.
Today is the anniversary of the murderous Arab bomb attack on the crowded Number 2 Bus going to the Kotel (Western Wall) in 2003.

Saturday night-Sunday July 31-August 1 / 23 Av

Yahrzeit of Rabbi Yaakov Yisrael Kanyevski, the "Steipler Rav" (1899-1985).

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