All You Need is Love

August 15, 2014

Every week, Jody Hirsh, the JCC's Judaic Education Director, provides a Judaic message that is featured at the top of the JCC's weekly email newsletter. Below is the Shabbat message for Friday, August 15, 2014.

All You Need is Love

You probably missed it. Last Monday was Tu B’Av, the holiday of the 15th of the month of Av – “Chag HaAhavah,” the Holiday of Love. Although the origins of this holiday are shrouded in Mystery, and there are MANY theories about how it began, Tu B’Av is the beginning of the grape harvest, and Yom Kippur is at the end of the grape harvest. The Mishna tells us:

There were no happier days for the people of Israel than the Fifteenth of Av and Yom Kippur, since on these days the daughters of Israel/Jerusalem go out dressed in white and dance in the vineyards. What were they saying? “Young man, consider whom you choose to be your wife.” - Mishnah, Ta’anit, Chapter 4

It was considered a day of matchmaking and weddings, and was considered, in fact, a perfect day for a wedding. Even in more modern times, it was celebrated on the Kibbutzim of a holiday of love: young women wore white, it was a day of dance performances, and a day of a sort of Jewish Valentine’s Day!

Tonight is the first Shabbat after Tu B’Av. So... why don’t we make it a Shabbat of love – love in the broadest sense. Love your families; Love your friends; Love the Shabbat. Shabbat Shalom

Young Kibbutznics dancing on Tu B’Av