The Jewish Valentine’s Day

Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel said, "Israel had no days as festive as the 15th of Av, when the maidens of Jerusalem would go out dressed in white... and dance in the vineyards."

Tu B’Av (meaning 15th of Av) is a post-biblical day of joy, always occurring on the full moon. It served as a matchmaking day for unmarried women in the second Temple period – before the fall of Jerusalem in 70 CE – a holiday that has been revived in Israel fairly recently, and reclaimed as a day for singles to meet and hopefully find their beshert (soulmate).

Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel said, “Israel had no days as festive as the 15th of Av, when the maidens of Jerusalem would go out dressed in white, in borrowed garments so that even those who could not afford finery would not be embarrassed, and dance in the vineyards.” (Taanit 26b, B. Talmud)

And as they danced, the women said, “Young men, look and observe well whom you are about to choose. Regard not beauty alone, but rather look to a virtuous family, for ‘Charm is deceptive, and beauty is vain; only a God-fearing woman shall be praised.’” (Proverbs 31:30)

May this Tu B’Av bring love and happiness to all, and let us say Amen!

Image from “Hallelujah” – the music video I directed for Hillel Tigay, a brilliant singer-songwriter, cantor, and frequent guest on AT Live.
WATCH IT HERE!

Originally published on Facebook

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