The Nine Days
Notes On The "Nine Days"
By Nosson Chayim Leff
We will soon begin 'the " Nine Days' -- a period of national
mourning. This somber period starts with the first day of the
month of Av -- the day on which Aharon Hakohein was
niftar ( took leave of this world ; i.e., passed away ). The
mourning culminates on Tish'a Be'Av, the ninth day of
the month. On that day, both the first and the second
Beis HaMikdash were destroyed..
In trying to handle this period of national mourning, you may find the
following ideas helpful. First, it is important to distinguish between
Atzvus--depression --and Aveilus-- feeling bereft... The Seforim single
out Atzvus -- a dark force of self-destruction which lurks deep
within most of us--as a key weapn of the Sitra Achra. Aveilus, on the
other hand, is a feeling of sadness because something dear to a person has
been lost ..
What have we lost? The Beis HaMikdash, and the easier access to
HaShem that the Mikdash afforded. More generally, we are mourning the
fact that "the Shechina is in Golus". This phrase is shorthand for the
many sources of grief from which we suffer because of the wide gap that
has opened between HaShem and ourselves. . Sources of grief include::
the Hester Panim in which we live ; the ensuing Chilul HaShem; ; people
who treat other people in ways incompatible with both being created
Betzelem Elokim;; 'leaders' who do not lead ;; ' 'followers' who do not
follow ;; Sin'as Chinam ( likewise, well-merited Sin'a). The list is
Clearly, we have much for which to mourn. But -- the Seforim tell us --
even during the Nine Days, our Torah and our Tefila--i.e., our Learning
and our Davening-- should beBesimcha ( with joy )...
Text Copyright © 2005 by Rabbi Dr. Nosson Chayim Leff and Torah.org.