Erev Tisha B'Av Service
Tisha B’Av is a day of national mourning commemorating the destruction of both the First and Second Temples in Jerusalem in the years 586 BCE and 70 CE respectively. Throughout our long history, other calamities that have befallen our people have also been linked to this day, yet the destruction of the ancient Temples, Jerusalem, and Biblical Judaism remain the focal point of mourning on this holiday.
On Tisha B’Av we observe many of the customs of mourning as our way of commemorating the day. We dress in a manner that outwardly shows our sadness by not bathing or shaving on Tisha B’Av. We also do not wear new clothing or shoes with leather soles, an ancient sign of wealth and comfort. Additionally, we do not engage in behavior that is joyful or pleasurable on this day, such as listening to music, a behavior which is reflected in our morning Tefillah where we read, rather than sing the prayers. We do not wear Tefillin on the morning of Tisha B’Av, but wait until Minchah to do so, and we read Eichah, the Book of Lamentations, once by candlelight and sitting on the floor as Tisha B’Av begins and again during Shacharit. Most notably, we emphasize our grief on this day by fasting, Tisha B’Av being the only other full fast day, from sundown to an hour after sundown, just like Yom Kippur.
We hope that you will join us this year in marking Tisha B’Av, and helping to commemorate the tragedy of this day and the impact it has had on our religion and national history.