This week at Azamra
2 Nisan 5783 / 24 March 2023

Torah Calendar

19 Adar-3 Nissan, 5783
March 12-25, 2023

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Attributes of the month of Adar: Ruling permutation of the letters of HAVAYAH are HEH-HEH-YUD-VAV contained in the final letters of four of the Hebrew words in Genesis 49:11, eeroH velashrekaH bniY athonO, "his foal..., and his ass's colt unto the choice vine". The month's corresponding letter is: KUF; Human attribute: LAUGHTER; Body Part: SPLEEN; Tribe: NAFTALI; Constellation: DAGIM (Pisces).

Monday night-Tuesday February 27-8 / 7 Adar

Today is observed as the Yahrzeit of Moshe Rabbenu -- our teacher Moses -- who died in the year 1272 B.C.E. On Moses' yahrzeit it is appropriate to strengthen oneself in belief in Moses and the Torah: "And they believed in HaShem and in Moses His servant" (Exodus 14:31). Breslover Chassidim customarily recite prayers on the theme of attachment to the true Tzaddik from Likutey Tefilot (e.g. Part I, Prayers 18, 30 and 64; Part II Prayers 7 & 20).

Saturday night-Sunday March 11-12 / 19 Adar

Yahrzeit of Rabbi Yosef Chayim Zonennfeld (1849-1932), Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem.

Monday March 13 / 20 Adar

This was the day when Choni HaMe'agel drew a circle around himself on the ground and refused to move out of it until his prayer for rain was answered (Megillat Ta'anit, Bavli Ta'anit 19a). Today we should give thanks for the abundant rains of blessing in Israel this year. Today was also the day when King Uzziah of Judah was smitten with leprosy when he entered the Sanctuary to burn incense, and Isaiah had his first vision on the same day (Isaiah ch. 6).

In the month of Adar Israel's power is so great that even with the breath of their mouths alone all the harsh judgments and bad spirits are sweetened so that they hold no sway at all in the world.

Monday night-Tuesday March 13-14 / 21 Adar

Yahrzeit of Reb Elimelech (1717-87), brother of Reb Zusia, outstanding Chassidic rebbe and author of No'am Elimelech.

Friday night-Saturday March 17-18 / 25 Adar
Shabbat Parshat HACHODESH
Shabbat Mevorachin

Torah reading: The double parshah of VAYAKHEL-PEKUDEY, Exodus 35:1-40:38 enumerates the Children of Israel's contributions for the building of the wilderness Sanctuary, describes how Bezalel constructed the Sanctuary and its vessels, and gives Moses' "accounting" for all the materials and the laws of the inauguration of Aaron and his sons as priests. With this double parshah we conclude the book of Exodus ("Chazak").

Special additional reading for Shabbat HACHODESH: Exodus 12:1-20 giving the laws of the month of Nissan, "Ha-Chodesh", and the festival of Passover in preparation for the coming season of our Redemption.

Shabbat Mevorachin: This Shabbat we bless the coming month of Nissan, month of Redemption. The Molad (junction of the moon and the sun) will be on Wednesday March 22 at 01:24 and 12 chalakim a.m. Rosh Chodesh Nissan will be on Wednesday night-Thursday March 22-23.
Today is the yahrzeit of Rabbi Avraham Gershon Ashkenazi of Kitov (1701-61), brother-in-law of the Baal Shem Tov.

Sunday March 19 / 26 Adar

In accordance with the opinion of Rabbi Yehoshua that the Sixth Day of Creation was on 1 Nissan (which falls this week on Thursday), the five days from today until Thursday contain tremendous potential for spiritual growth in preparation for the coming Pesach season of redemption. The days 23-29 Adar also correspond to the seven days of inauguration of the Sanctuary and the Priests by Moses in the wilderness prior to the dedication of the Sanctuary on 1 Nissan.
In our time, these days are auspicious for preparing ourselves for the coming "New Year" this coming Thursday, 1st of Nissan, a time of spiritual and physical renewal.

When you clean out your cupboards preparing for Pesach, don't throw away unwanted clothes and other items without first thinking if they might be of use to others. Many organizations are happy to take such items and give them to the needy.

Wednesday March 22 / 29 Adar:
Yom Kippur Katan

This is a day for introspection and repentance prior to the beginning of the new month. Many fast from dawn until nightfall and engage in self-examination and repentance, reciting a special service in the afternoon and, where possible, journeying to pray at the graves of the Tzaddikim.
Today is a particularly auspicious day for offering prayers for one's livelihood (SheLaH).

Attributes of the month of Nissan: Ruling permutation of the letters of HAVAYAH is the first in the order of permutations: YOD KEH VAV KEH, contained in the initial Hebrew letters of Yismechu Hashamayim Vetagel Ha'aretz -- "Let the heavens rejoice and the earth exult" (Psalms 96:11). The month's corresponding letter is: HEH; Human attribute: SPEECH; Body Part: RIGHT FOOT; Tribe: JUDAH; Constellation: RAM (Aries).

Wednesday night-Thursday March 22-23 / 1 Nissan:
Rosh Chodesh NISSAN

On Rosh Chodesh we recite Ya'aleh VeYavo, the "Half" Hallel and the additional Musaf service, and it is customary to mark the day with a more festive meal than usual.

Chodesh Tov UMevorach!!!
Have a Good and Blessed Month!!!

The first ten days of Nissan correspond to the letter Yod of the divine name A-D-N-Y; the four days of checking the Paschal lamb from 11-14 Nissan correspond to the Dalet The fifty days from the first day of Pesach to the eve of Shavuot correspond to the Nun and Shavuot itself corresponds to the Aleph, signifying our complete acceptance of the kingship of G-d through our service in this period.

From Rosh Chodesh Nissan until Pesach, many have the custom of not eating Matzot in order to eat the Pesach matzot with relish. Don't forget to spare a thought for the many who cannot afford Matzot and other Pesach needs. In this period it is customary to give Kimcha d'Pischa -- special charity to the poor to cover their "flour" and other Pesach needs.

The Sanctuary in the wilderness was inaugurated on Rosh Chodesh Nissan, and this auspicious day has ten crowns: (1) On that day the Creation was complete; (2) Nachshon Prince of Judah brought his offering to Moses' wilderness Sanctuary; (3) Aaron began his duties as High Priest; (4) The first communal offerings were brought; (5) Fire came down from heaven to the altar; (6) Sacrificial portions were eaten within designated limits; (7) The Shechinah dwelt among the people; (8) The Cohanim blessed the people; (9) It was henceforth forbidden to sacrifice on private altars; (10) This day was designated as Rosh Chodesh. Numerous sections of the Torah were revealed on 1 Nissan.

Since the Princes of the Twelve Tribes of Israel brought their inaugural sacrifices to the Sanctuary day by day on the first twelve days of Nissan, many have the custom of reading the corresponding passages from Numbers 7:1-89 each day after the morning prayers, starting with verses 1-17 on the first day and concluding with vv. 78-89 on the twelth day. Some study the lengthy Midrashim on how the identical sacrifices of the twelve princes in each case had different intentions and allusions (Midrash Rabbah NASO and see Me'Am Lo'ez).

Each of the first twelve days of Nissan corresponds to one of the twelve months of the coming year. "And those with clear vision can see how the events on each of these days allude to what is to come in the corresponding month" (R. Menachem Mendel of Riminov).

Blessing of the trees (Birkhat Ha-Ilanot): This special blessing is recited only once a year at any point during the month of Nissan on seeing at least two blossoming fruit trees, whether of the same or different species. "Blessed are You, G-d, our Lord, King of the universe, for He left nothing lacking in His universe, and He created in it good creatures and good trees, to give mankind pleasure in them." Birkat Ha'ilanot is available in most Siddurim. Sepharadic and some Chassidic Siddurim include extended accompanying readings of the Psalms and a special prayer for the elevation of the souls.

1 Nissan was the birthday of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov. He once said, "When somebody thinks of me they become like a newborn babe".

Friday night-Saturday March 24-25 / 3 Nissan

Torah reading: VAYIKRA (Leviticus 1:1-5:26) setting forth the various categories of the Temple sacrifical offerings. Haftara: Isaiah 43:21-44:23.

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