Contact Us
The Month of Sivan
One Heart - By <a href=''/k18065''>Sara Seldowitz</a>
One Heart - By Sara Seldowitz

Sivan is the third month on the Jewish calendar counting from Nissan.

Rosh Chodesh Sivan is distinguished as the day on which the Jewish people arrived and camped before Mount Sinai.

The Torah describes this with the phrase “Israel camped before the mountain” (Exodus 19:2), where the verb vayichan (“camped”) is stated in a singular form, in contrast to the other verbs in the narrative. This describes how the entire people camped “as one person, with one heart,” expressing true unity.

In the month of Sivan, we celebrate the holiday of Shavuot, when the Torah was given by G‑d to the Jewish people on Mount Sinai more than 3,300 years ago. Every year on the holiday of Shavuot, we renew our acceptance of G‑d’s gift, and G‑d “re-gives” the Torah.

The holiday of Shavuot is a two-day holiday, beginning at sundown of the fifth of Sivan and lasting until nightfall of the seventh of Sivan. (In Israel it is a one-day holiday, ending at nightfall of the sixth of Sivan.)

The word shavuot means “weeks.” It marks the completion of the seven-week counting period between Passover and Shavuot. The mitzvah to count each of the 49 days between Passover and Shavuot—known as Sefirat HaOmer—is a period of introspection and self-refinement, as we prepare ourselves to receive the Torah anew on Shavuot. Each day of counting represents another step in this spiritual journey.

The giving of the Torah was a far-reaching spiritual event—one that touched the essence of the Jewish soul for all times. Our sages have compared it to a wedding between G‑d and the Jewish people.

Shavuot also means “oaths,” for on this day G‑d swore eternal devotion to us, and we in turn pledged everlasting loyalty to Him.

Sivan Features
Transcendent divinity directing the humanistic
The commandment to count the Omer is an mitzvah upon every individual -- as opposed to a communal obligation. This tells us something about the nature of our relationship with Torah.
A story of "riches to rags." A woman who sacrificed all in order to cleave to the G-d of Israel -- and the reward she earned for her courage.
You open the letter carefully, you start to read your beloved’s words and you actually begin to hear her voice. And then you feel her presence.
The Holiday of the Giving of the Torah
A Supercharged Opportunity for Personal Growth
With step by step instructions
Sivan Calendar
Special Days in Sivan
1 Sivan Encampment at Sinai
On the 1st of Sivan of the year 2448 from creation (1313 BCE), six weeks after their exodus from Egypt, the Children of Israel arrived at Mount...
6 Sivan Giving of the Torah
On the 6th Sivan of the year 2448 from creation (1313 BCE), seven weeks after the Exodus, G-d revealed Himself on Mount Sinai. The entire people of...
6 Sivan Passing of King David
David, a descendent of Judah the son of Jacob as well as of Ruth, a Moabite convert to Judaism, was anointed King of Israel by Samuel in 878 BCE....
6 Sivan Passing of R. Israel Baal Shem Tov
In 1734, Rabbi Israel Baal Shem Tov ("BeSHT", 1698-1760), who up until that time had lived as a hidden tzaddik, began to publicly disseminate his...
18 Sivan Spanish Expulsion Decree Rescinded
The Spanish cabinet approved a bill which granted religious freedom to Spain's Jews as well as other religious minorities. Since 1492 it had been...
Jewish History In Sivan
1 Sivan
2105 BCE Flood Waters Recede
150 days after the rains stopped falling in the Great Flood, the raging waters which covered the face... Read More »
1313 BCE Encampment at Sinai
On the 1st of Sivan of the year 2448 from creation (1313 BCE), six weeks after their exodus from... Read More »
1312 BCE Korach Swallowed Up by the Earth
Korach, who led a rebellion against the leadership of Moses and Aaron, met his end when... Read More »
1096 Worms Jews Massacred
At the end of a week in which a group Jews took refuge in a local castle in Worms, Germany, the... Read More »
2 Sivan
1313 BCE Chosen People
Sivan 2 is marked on the Jewish calendar as Yom HaMeyuchas ("Day of Distinction"); it was on this day... Read More »
1967 Israeli Defense Forces Capture Golan Heights
Until the Six-Day War (see “Today in Jewish History” for Iyar 26), the Syrian army was deployed in... Read More »
3 Sivan
1313 BCE Jews Prepare to Receive Torah
On Sivan 3, G-d instructed Moses to "set boundaries for the people around, saying, 'Beware of... Read More »
68 CE Vespasian Captures Jericho
In his advance towards the destruction of Jerusalem, Rome Emperor Titus Flavius Vespasianus... Read More »
4 Sivan
1313 BCE Moses Transcribes (first part of) Torah
On Sivan 4 of the year 2448 from creation (1313 BCE)--two days before the revelation at Mount... Read More »
576 Forced Conversion in Clermont
A mob, accompanied by the bishop of Clermont-Ferrand, France, razed the local synagogue to the... Read More »
1481 Jews Returned to Spain
Pope Sixtus IV instructed his local bishops that all Jews who had fled the Spanish Inquisition (see... Read More »
1648 Chmielnitzki Massacres
The Cossack rebellion against Polish rule in Ukraine, under the leadership of Bogdan Chmielnitzki... Read More »
5 Sivan
1568 BCE Reuben Finds Mandrakes
The incident involving the mandrakes (dudaim) which Reuben, the eldest son of Jacob, found in the... Read More »
1313 BCE Jews Accept Torah
On this day, Moses made a covenant with the Jewish people at the foot of Mount Sinai at which the... Read More »
1728 Rabbis Burnt at Stake
On this day Rabbis Chayim and Yehoshua Reitzes were tortured and burned in Lvov, Poland after they... Read More »
6 Sivan
1313 BCE Giving of the Torah
On the 6th Sivan of the year 2448 from creation (1313 BCE), seven weeks after the Exodus, G-d... Read More »
837 BCE Passing of King David
David, a descendent of Judah the son of Jacob as well as of Ruth, a Moabite convert to Judaism, was... Read More »
1096 Cologne Jews Martyred
During the first crusade (see "Today in Jewish History" for Iyar 8), the Jews of Cologne, Germany... Read More »
1760 Passing of R. Israel Baal Shem Tov
In 1734, Rabbi Israel Baal Shem Tov ("BeSHT", 1698-1760), who up until that time had lived as... Read More »
7 Sivan
1749 Ger Tzedek of Vilna Burned at the Stake
Avraham ben Avraham, the famed "Ger Tzedek" (Righteous Convert) of Vilna, was born as Valentin... Read More »
8 Sivan
1147 Rabbi Escapes Crusaders
Rabbi Yaakov ben Meir Tam, known as the "Rabbenu Tam," was one of Rashi's illustrious grandsons.... Read More »
9 Sivan
1939 Passing of "Kaf Hachaim"
Rabbi Yaakov Chaim Sofer, better known as the Kaf Hachaim (the name of the monumental halachic work... Read More »
10 Sivan
1904 Wolf Wissotzky
Klonimus Wolf Wissotzky, the son of poor parents, established The Wissotzky Tea company in 1849 and... Read More »
11 Sivan
1900 Rebbe's Parents Wed
The Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, of righteous memory's, parents, Rabbi Levi Yitzchak... Read More »
1989 Passing of "Minchat Yitzchak"
Rabbi Yitzchak Yaakov Weiss, known as the Minchat Yitzchak (the name of the responsa he authored)... Read More »
13 Sivan
1313 BCE Moses Ascends to the Top of Mount Sinai
"Moses went up to the mountain, and the cloud covered the mountain...for six days. On the seventh... Read More »
1948 Bombing in Cairo Jewish Quarter
Following the War of Independence (see Jewish History for the 6th of Iyar), citizens in many Arab... Read More »
14 Sivan
1510 Jewish Books Spared from Destruction
In 1509, Emperor Maximilian of Germany ordered that all Jewish books in the cities of Cologne and... Read More »
15 Sivan
1565 and 1446 BCE Birth and Passing of Judah
Judah, the fourth son of Jacob and Leah, was born in Charan on the 15th of Sivan, of the year 2196... Read More »
1927 Sixth Lubavitcher Rebbe arrested
Shortly after midnight of the 15th of Sivan of 1927, the sixth Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Yosef... Read More »
17 Sivan
2105 BCE Noah's Ark Comes to Rest on Mt. Ararat
Seven months after the beginning of the Great Flood, and 17 days after the waters covering the earth... Read More »
circa 140 BCE Hasmonean Victory
The Hasmonean fighters recaptured Migdal Tzur from the Greek enemy and proclaimed this day a holiday... Read More »
18 Sivan
1967 Spanish Expulsion Decree Rescinded
The Spanish cabinet approved a bill which granted religious freedom to Spain's Jews as well as other... Read More »
20 Sivan
1171 Martyrs of Blois
The 20th of Sivan is the anniversary of the first blood libel in France. On this date in 1171, tens... Read More »
22 Sivan
1312 BCE Miriam Quarantined
Miriam, the elder sister of Moses and Aaron, was afflicted with tzaraat (leprosy) after speaking... Read More »
23 Sivan
797 BCE Jeroboam Barricades Jerusalem
After King Solomon's passing in 797 BCE, ten of the twelve tribes of Israel, led by Jeroboam ben... Read More »
357 BCE Haman's Decree Counteracted
Even after Haman was hanged on the 17th of Nissan of 357 BCE, his evil decree "to destroy, kill and... Read More »
25 Sivan
2nd century CE Three of the "Ten Martyrs" Killed
Among the millions of Jews cruelly killed by the Romans were the "Ten Martyrs"--all great sages and... Read More »
4th Century BCE Egyptians "Sue" For Gold & Silver
Egyptian representatives appeared in the court of Alexander the Great, demanding that the Jews pay... Read More »
27 Sivan
2nd century CE R. Chananya ben Tradyon Killed
Rabbi Chananya ben Tradyon, one of the "Ten Martyrs" (see entry for Sivan 25) was killed on this... Read More »
28 Sivan
1941 Lubavitcher Rebbe Arrives in US
After escaping Nazi-occupied Paris, and many perilous months in Vichy France, the Lubavitcher... Read More »
29 Sivan
1312 BCE Spies Dispatched
Moses dispatched 12 spies to tour the Holy Land in preparation for its conquest by the people of... Read More »
Laws & Customs For Sivan
1 Sivan
Today isRosh Chodesh ("Head of the Month") for the month of Sivan. Special portions are added to the... Read More »
Tomorrow is the forty-sixth day of the Omer Count. Since, on the Jewish calendar, the day begins at... Read More »
2 Sivan
Tomorrow is the forty-seventh day of the Omer Count. Since, on the Jewish calendar, the day begins... Read More »
3 Sivan
Today begin the three days of preparation for the festival of Shavuot known as the "Three Days of... Read More »
Tomorrow is the forty-eighth day of the Omer Count. Since, on the Jewish calendar, the day begins at... Read More »
4 Sivan
Tomorrow is the forty-ninth -- and last -- day of the Omer Count. Since, on the Jewish calendar, the... Read More »
5 Sivan
In preparation for the festival of Shavuot, we study one of the six chapters of the Talmud's Ethics... Read More »
The Talmud relates that when G-d came to give the Torah to the People of Israel in the early morning... Read More »
Visit our Shavuot... Read More »
6 Sivan
The Torah reading for the 1st day of Shavuot is from Exodus 19-20, which recounts the giving of the... Read More »
The Lubavitcher Rebbe urged that all children -- including infants --should be brought to the... Read More »
It is the custom in many communities to read the biblical Book of Ruth, which tells the story of... Read More »
It is customary to eat dairy foods on Shavuot. Traditional Shavuot dairy foods include cheesecake... Read More »
Visit our Shavuot... Read More »
7 Sivan
Outside of the Land of Israel, Shavuot is observed for a 2nd day today. Links... Read More »
Yizkor, the remembrance prayer for departed parents, is recited today after the morning reading of... Read More »
Once a month, as the moon waxes in the sky, we recite a special blessing called Kiddush Levanah... Read More »
8 Sivan
The day following a festival is called Isru Chag ("tied to the festival"). Tachnun (confession of... Read More »
12 Sivan
When the Holy Temple stood in Jerusalem, and all Jews would come there for the three annual... Read More »
It is the custom of many communities (and such is the Chabad custom) to continue the weekly study of... Read More »
19 Sivan
During the summer months, from the Shabbat after Passover until the Shabbat before Rosh Hashahah, we... Read More »
26 Sivan
This Shabbat is Shabbat Mevarchim ("the Shabbat that blesses" the new month): a special prayer is... Read More »
During the summer months, from the Shabbat after Passover until the Shabbat before Rosh Hashahah, we... Read More »
30 Sivan
Today is the first of the two Rosh Chodesh ("Head of the Month") days for the Hebrew month of... Read More »
Jewish Women's Events
Find Women's Events Near You
Rosh Chodesh
Browse Other Months
What Is Rosh Chodesh?
The Jewish calendar follows the lunar year. The renewal of the moon, marks the beginning of the month. Rosh Chodesh, which means ‘head of the month’ celebrates the start of a new month on the Jewish calendar.

Throughout history our light has waxed and waned. But even in utter darkness, it has never been extinguished.

More About Rosh Chodesh
A Monthly Holiday for Women
The special connection between women and Rosh Chodesh harks way back to the episode of the Golden Calf, when the women refused to surrender their jewelry for use in making the idol. As a reward, they were given Rosh Chodesh as a special Holiday for women.

Rosh Chodesh celebrates the monthly renewal of the moon, after it wanes to the point of disappearance. Thus Rosh Chodesh celebrates the concept of perpetuity despite life’s peaks and plunges. It is the woman who through her steadfast faith that ensures our nation’s survival; it is she who ensures that no matter how much we wane, we will always be renewed.

More on the Women Connection
~ In honor of the Gold family of Montreal ~