Monday, August 8, 2011

On Tisha B'Av We Reflect on the Destruction of the First and Second Temples

Tonight, Monday, August 8, is the start of Tisha B'Av, the Fast of the Ninth of Av, a day of mourning to commemorate tragedies that have befallen the Jewish people, many of which coincidentally have occurred on the ninth of Av.

The primary commemoration is that of the destruction of the first and second Temples, both of which were destroyed on the ninth of Av (the first by the Babylonians in 586 B.C.E.; the second by the Romans in 70 C.E.).

Many Jews fast and diminish their joy on this day by abstaining from eating, drinking, washing, wearing leather shoes, and intimacy.  The fast starts at sundown tonight and ends at sundown Tuesday night.

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