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Tu B’Av, as a holiday of joy and lovemaking, represents the ultimate rise from mourning and embrace of life and its bounty, with gratitude for our own capacity for love itself.
He will take us back in love; He will cover up our iniquities, You will hurl all our sins into the depths of the sea. -Micah 7:19
During the year I spent studying in Jerusalem as a rabbinic student, it was impossible to escape the upcoming High Holy Days.
The ninth day of the Hebrew month of Av has come to symbolize a day of tragedy for the Jewish people.
Late in the evening of September 28, 2009, following very introspective and rewarding Yom Kippur services at Congregation Ohabai Shalom in Nashville, I took a hot shower and then stood, wrapped in a towel, in front of the bathroom mirror. As I brushed my teeth, I reflected on my experience of this most prayerful of days, when Jews throughout the world come to grips with their mistakes and seek atonement.
It is very hard to say you are sorry – and even harder to really mean it. It is not any easier to truly forgive.