On Saturday evening, July 28, B’nai Emunah will host a community-wide observance of Tisha B’Av. The event is jointly sponsored by B’nai Emunah, Ner Tamid, Or Shalom, Beth Israel Judea, Beth Sholom, Kehillah SF, Coastside Torah Circle, and West Bay Chavurah.
The program will begin at 7:00 PM with a dairy-vegetarian potluck with singing, words of Torah, and togetherness. At 8:30 we will turn the lights out, chant Havdallah, and read Eicha (the book of Lamentations) by candlelight.
Tisha B’Av is often called the saddest day in Jewish history, because the following events all occurred on this very day.
- The negative report about Canaan given to the Israelites by Moses’ twelve scouts, and other events
- The destruction of the First and Second Temples
- The failure of Bar Kochba’s revolt
- The expulsion of the Jews from Spain
Like Yom Kippur, Tisha b’Av is a fast day lasting from sunset the previous evening until the following nightfall. There are prohibitions on eating, drinking, bathing, perfume, wearing leather, sexual relations, and displays of affection. As with observance of other fasts, these prohibitions are suspended in favor of health issues.