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Shabbat, June 24, 2017
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Rosh Chodesh Tammuz
Halachic Times (Zmanim)
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Laws and Customs

Today is the first of the two Rosh Chodesh ("Head of the Month") days for the Hebrew month of "Tammuz" (when a month has 30 days, both the last day of the month and the first day of the following month serve as the following month's Rosh Chodesh).

Special portions are added to the daily prayers: Hallel (Psalms 113-118) is recited -- in its "partial" form -- following the Shacharit morning prayer, and the Yaaleh V'yavo prayer is added to the Amidah and to Grace After Meals; the additional Musaf prayer is said (when Rosh Chodesh is Shabbat, special additions are made to the Shabbat Musaf). Tachnun (confession of sins) and similar prayers are omitted.

Many have the custom to mark Rosh Chodesh with a festive meal and reduced work activity. The latter custom is prevalent amongst women, who have a special affinity with Rosh Chodesh -- the month being the feminine aspect of the Jewish Calendar.

Links: The 29th Day; The Lunar Files

During the summer months, from the Shabbat after Passover until the Shabbat before Rosh Hashahah, we study a weekly chapter of the Talmud's Ethics of the Fathers ("Avot") each Shabbat afternoon; this week we study Chapter Four.

Link: Ethics of the Fathers, Chapter 4

Daily Thought

Making a living is all about plumbing. You’ve got a reservoir up there, a water tank down here, and you need some way to connect the two.

The reservoir of life up there can’t be changed or moved. As for the water tank down here, that is your career, and it receives only what is decided from Above.

But you also have a second career—your principal career—and that is to bring more good into this world.

In that career, you are a plumber. You can open faucets, widen pipelines, drain all you can from an Infinite Source. It will overflow into the water tanks of your material career. It might even increase their volume.

The flow of life is in your hands.

Likkutei Sichot, vol. 6, p. 193.