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Beit Midrash Shabbat and Holidays Tu Be'av

What is the Significance of Tu B’av

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Question: What is the significance of Tu B’av?

Answer: G'mara Ta’ anit says no holiday was as festive as Tu B'Av (& Yom Kippur!). Among the happy events occurring on this date:

- The generation of the desert, ordained to die out before entering Israel, would lay down in graves each year on Tisha B'Av, & 15,000 would not get up. But the last 15,000 were spared, realizing this only when they saw Av's full moon, clearly indicating that Tisha B'Av (9 Av) had come & gone;

- On this day, women were allowed to marry men from any Shevet, not just their own;

- After the terrible civil war in the incident of Pilegesh B'Giv'ah (see Shoftim 20), the Tribes were forbidden to intra-marry with Shevet Binyamin; this ban was also lifted on Tu B'Av;

- The Jews slain at Betar in the Bar Kochba rebellion against Rome were finally allowed burial on this day; their bodies miraculously had not decayed.

Tu B’Av is known as a day propitious for matchmaking & is associated in Israel with showing love for one’s spouse - & that’s always a good thing!
Rabbi Stewart Weiss
Was ordained at the Hebrew Theological College in Skokie, Illinois, and led congregations in Chicago and Dallas prior to making Aliyah in 1992. He directs the Jewish Outreach Center in Ra'anana, helping to facilitate the spiritual absorption of new olim.
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