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One…two…three… … … thirty-three!

Friday, 23 May 2008

Lag B’Omer — a joyous break in this period of counting.

Since Passover, we have marked each and every day as we make our yearly trek from Egpyt to Sinai. From Slavery to Freedom. From Redemption to Revealation.

Our journey will end in a couple of weeks on the Festival of Shavuot when we will recount the awesome moment in history and time and space when we received Torah at the foot of the Mountain.

Today we take a break from the spiritual journey and reflect, instead, on the historical significance of this period. In an act of brave resistence, Shimon Bar Kochva led a revolt against the Romans from 132-135 CE. During this time, a plague killed 24,000 students of Rabbi Akiva in this seven week period between Passover and Shavuot. As time wore on, our people continued to suffer futher tragedies during this seven week period. To commemorate these tragedies, it has become customary to observe a period of semi-mourning during the Counting of the Omer. Just as one would refrain from certain activities during a time of personal mourning, it has become tradition not to hold weddings and other festivities, not to listen to music, and not to cut one’s hair.

Except for today. Today is the 33rd day of the Counting of the Omer. Lamed=30 and Gimel=3. L”G (pronounced ‘lahg’). For it was on the 33rd day of the Counting of the Omer that Rabbi Akiva’s students ceased falling victim to the plague and so it became a day of great rejoicing.

Long rejected by the liberal community, observance of Lag B’Omer is not something with which I was reared. As the years go by, however, I am drawn more and more to those observances which tie us to our Homeland as well as to the community across time and space.

Today was the day that I selected to go into the studio and start recording. I consciously chose a day that would have added significance.

As usual, other plans were afoot. An interface problem caused us to wrap after about 25 minutes of recording.

Eh. What can you do? No point in getting upset. I’ll have to find some other way to mark today. A bonfire perhaps…

Happy Lag B’Omer!!

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Friday, 23 May 2008 2:29 pm

    Recording!? When will it be done….

  2. Friday, 23 May 2008 4:01 pm

    Yeah. I knew about your recording, but I don’t think you’ve mentioned it here before.

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