A number of years ago, I wrote the following to my precious community, Shirat David, here in Efrat. Would I change any of the words today?
The days following Tisha b’Av have always presented themselves as being some of the most challenging days of the year. There is always something new in the air, but it’s quite hard and difficult to put a finger on it.
The relief of being done with the mourning while shifting the focus onto the more exciting part of the summer is always nice. But on the other hand, there is a voice deep down inside of us that refuses to be ignored.
Did we bury the kinnot we used this year?
Did we get through Tisha B’av or did Tisha B’av get through us?
As the fast had ended, I found myself looking for something to hold onto. Thankfully, I came across the following words from R’ Shlomo Carlebach a’h.
“The difference between a doctor and a layman is very simple. If a layman walks into a hospital and sees people dying, he will run away, heart broken, feeling that there is nothing he can do. When it comes to a doctor, something else happens. The more patients the doctor sees, the more he realizes what he has to do. Tisha b’Av is not just to show you destruction. The whole idea of Tisha b’Av is that once a year G-d opens our eyes and we see how destroyed the world is, and it gives us strength to do something.
Tisha b’Av is only good if you remember it a little bit longer. If the day after Tisha B’av is the same as the day before Tisha b’Av, what good is the whole thing?”
It seems to me that Hashem sees us as the doctors of our generation. The doctor within us knows that in addition to all the wonderful and beautiful endeavours we are each involved in, we share a common desire – none of us want another Tisha b’Av.
The day after acknowledging and experiencing the destruction of that which is most essential to the soul of our people, calls upon us to dig deeper. Tisha b’Av whispers into our ears that whatever we thought was enough, clearly wasn’t. There is still so much pain, confusion and brokenness, both throughout the world, and within our people. And thanks to social media – it’s right in front of our eyes.
No one knows exactly what needs to be done as well as what change to implement, but everyone know that something needs to be done and change does need to happen. I wanted to take this opportunity to bless us all. The strength we received from another Tisha b’Av going through us should enable us to cry out to Hashem just a bit stronger, asking for a bit more clarity and guidance. The concealment during Tisha b’Av should motivate us to cry out to Hashem for a stronger revelation.
Ribbono shel Olam, use us. Use us to reveal your love and your caring for every individual. Use us to show the world that a house of prayer for all nations waiting to be rebuilt. There is a place for everyone. Use our Beit Knesset to be a shul that contains the space for all those who wish to call out to you, sing to you and cry with you.
For the sake of our children, for the sake of your children