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Tuesday, October 9, 2012

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Simchat Torah
Halachic Times (Zmanim)
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Today is Simchat Torah ("Rejoicing of the Torah"), on which we conclude, and begin anew, the annual Torah reading cycle. The event is marked with great rejoicing, and the "hakafot" procession, held both on the eve and morning of Simchat Torah, in which we march and dance with Torah scrolls around the reading table in the synagogue. In the words of the Chassidic saying, "On Simchat Torah, we rejoice in the Torah, and the Torah rejoices in us; the Torah, too, wants to dance, so we become the Torah's dancing feet."

During today's Torah reading, everyone, including children under the age of Bar Mitzvah, is called up to the Torah; thus the reading is read numerous times, and each aliyah is given collectively to many individuals, so that everyone should recite the blessing over the Torah on this day.

Links: Torah in the Winter; Dancing with the Torah; Love, Marriage and Hakafot; A Crown of Slippers

Vzot Haberachah (Deuteronomy 33-34)

Daily Thought

This self of which we are conscious is but a tiny portion of the whole, the tip of a peninsula, a finely focused ray of an infinite source of light.

Upstream lies unimaginable wealth, storehouses of treasures left by many generations. Upstream lies every G‑dly act of our holy mothers and fathers, the strength and courage of every martyr, the unlimited power of G‑d’s breath within us.

When you dance and sing in the joy of a beautiful deed, listen to the music. You will hear your holy mothers and fathers of ages past, dancing and singing along.