Happy Tu B’Av everyone.
Tu B’Av is the anniversary of the date that Debbie and I got engaged – so happy Tu B’Av Debbie, my true Eishet Chayil – 15 years since we got engaged, and here we are 5 kids later and you are still a wonderful wife and mother.
2 years ago my brother wrote a very interesting Post on Tu B'Av which I thought I’d summarize for you.
The Mishna in Ta’anit (4:6) lists 5 events that happened on the 9th of Av:
- The spies sent by Moses to report on Eretz Yisrael returned and gave a negative report.
- The First Temple was destroyed
- The Second Temple was destroyed
- Betar was destroyed, marking the end of the Bar Kochba rebellion
- The Temple mount was ploughed over
The Talmud (Ta’anit 30b) lists 5 things that happened on the 15th of Av:
- The ban for orphaned girls to marry outside their tribe was lifted
- The punishment of the spies ended and the Jews stopped dying in the Desert
- The tribe of Benyamin was welcomed back into Klal Yisrael and permitted to marry with other tribes
- The road blocks preventing Jews from brining wood to the Beit Hamikdash were lifted
- The dead of Betar were buried
These is a certain parallel between the events of 9 Av and 15 Av:
|9 Av||15 Av|
The spies sent by Moses to report on Eretz Yisrael returned and gave a negative report.
|The punishment of the spies ended and the Jews stopped dying in the Desert|
The First Temple was destroyed
|The tribe of Benyamin was welcomed back into Klal Yisrael and permitted to marry with other tribes|
The Second Temple was destroyed
|The ban for orphaned girls to marry outside their tribe was lifted|
Betar was destroyed, marking the end of the Bar Kochba rebellion
|The dead of Betar were buried|
The Temple mount was ploughed over
|The road blocks preventing Jews from brining wood to the Beit Hamikdash were lifted|
Rabbi Sedley explains this connection as follows:
Obviously numbers 1 and 4 match. Number 5 is intuitive - Ploughing the Temple Mount was intended as a clear sign that Jerusalem would never be central to Jews again. There was to be no chance of rebuilding or reviving it. Removing the blocks that Yeravam had set up showed that Jerusalem was once again the centre of things, and that everyone would be able to go there.
Numbers 2 and 3 seem to go together, because both are the destruction of the Temple, and both are allowing marriages between tribes.
The first Temple was destroyed because of murder, idol worship and sexual immorality. The tribe of Binyanim were banned from marrying anyone because of the incident recorded at the end of Shoftim - Pilegesh b'Givah, which involved idolatry, sexual immorality and brutal murder.
The Second Temple was destroyed because of baseless hatred. As I wrote here Tisha B'Av Quotes, the Netziv explains that the main sin was that everyone felt that their way of serving G-d was the only correct way. Everyone had their group with their own views on life, and anyone who disagreed with them (even though they were equally 'religous' was considered an apikoros. The tribes originally thought it was forbidden for them to marry each other. Each tribe had to maintain tribal purity. Since each tribe had their own way of serving G-d, based on where they stood at Sinai and surrounding the Mishkan, it stands to reason that they also felt their way was the only true way of serving G-d, which was why they could not intermarry. Allowing 'mixed marriages' (nothing to do with Noah Feldman) broke down the barriers and allowed for ahavat chinam.
Source: Rabbi Sedley
Happy Tu B’Av to all. May we all soon merit to see a time when we know true Ahavat Chinam and the Beit HaMikdash will again be the center of our personal and national identity.
Other interesting Tu B'Av Posts: