ב"ה
To view Shabbat Times click here to set your location

Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Halachic Times (Zmanim)
To view Halachic Times click here to set your location
Jewish History

Shortly before sundown on the 29th of Adar, G-d commanded Moses regarding the mitzvah of sanctifying the crescent new moon and establishing a lunar calendar. This is the first mitzvah the Jews were given as a nation.

Moses had difficulty envisaging the moon's appearance at the exact moment of its monthly rebirth. After the sun set, G-d showed Moses the crescent new moon of the new month of Nissan, showing him the precise dimensions of the moon at the moment the new month is to be consecrated.

For the generations that followed, each new month was ushered in when two witnesses testified before the Sanhedrin (rabbinic supreme court) that they had seen the molad, the new moon. In the 4th century CE, Hillel II foresaw that the Jews would no longer be able to follow a Sanhedrin-based calendar. So Hillel and his rabbinical court established the perpetual calendar which is followed today -- until Moshiach will come and reestablish the Sanhedrin.

Links::
Lunar Time
Rosh Chodesh
The Molad

A few months after its creation, Napoleon's "Sanhedrin" (rabbinical supreme court) was dissolved. The Sanhedrin was created to approve certain religious regulations requested by the French "Assembly of Notables." The regulations were designed to blur the distinction between Jews and non-Jews.

The rulings of this pseudo-Sanhedrin were never adopted by Jewish communities.

Link:: Napoleon Bonoparte

Laws and Customs
Starting in the afternoon, Tachanun (confession of sins) and similar prayers are omitted.
Daily Thought

The core of a Jew is wrapped up in the six words of the Sh'ma Israel.

Very roughly, and at great compromise to the richness of each word, it says, "A Jew must contemplate: G‑d—who is our G‑d—that G‑d is One."

Meaning: Not simply that there is only one G‑d, but that this oneness of G‑d is such that nothing—not the heavens, not the earth, and not even all the vast wonders they contain—nothing at all exists outside the perfect Oneness that transcends and encompasses all things.

But then, it only takes two Hebrew words to say that G‑d is one. Why do we need six?

Because at this point you must turn your ear inward. And from there you will hear that this Oneness is not a knowledge you learned from your teachers, discerned from your observations, or intuited out of your sense of wonder.

No—this sense of Oneness is yours because it is the furnace that burns within the powerhouse of your soul, the oxygen that breathes within every facet of your being, the unstoppable current that drives every movement of your life. It is within you, at your very core.

The knowledge, the tradition, the contemplation—all this is vital and necessary: To awaken within you that which you knew before you were born.

And so:

Sh'ma: Learn, contemplate, grasp, and then listen deep inside…

Yisrael:...innermost of my soul, for whom this is the absolute reality…

A-do-nai:...(focus when saying this name upon the written but unspeakable name of) the One who transcends time, space, and all dualities…

E-lo-hei-nu:...know that this is the very same One who breathes within the essence of my soul, who belongs to me more than anything possession I own, more than my hand and heart belong to me, granted to me as an irrevocable gift, and therefore I know that…

A-do-nai:...the power that sustains all being…

Echad:...is absolutely One. In the heavens above and on the earth below, there is nothing else.

Contemplate this, and how could you not be filled with love, with a yearning that consumes heart and soul, to bond with that Oneness in every mitzvah you do, every word of Torah you speak, every thought and every action of your day?

Likutei Torah, Drushim L’Rosh Hashanah 62d.