• Redeeming Sadness: A Mussar Appreciation
  • Chaverim-only Webinar with Dr. Alan Morinis
  • Sunday, July 26, 4:30 p.m. ET
  • (Free and Open to Current Chaverim as of 7/24)

We are in the three-week period that begins with the fast of the 17th of Tammuz and climaxes with Tisha b’Av, the ninth day of the month of Av. This is traditionally a period of mourning for the destruction of both the First and Second Temples in Jerusalem. Over time, other tragic events have come to be marked on Tisha b’Av as well, including the declaration of the First Crusade in 1095 and the expulsion of the Jews from Spain in 1492.
This saddest day of the year is marked by a fast that begins at sundown on Wednesday evening, July 29, and runs through sundown on Thursday, July 30.
It is interesting and noteworthy that the Jewish tradition has marked out a time on the calendar when we are called upon to be sad. Most holidays are joyful, and, in general, people do not like being sad and make their escape back to the land of happy as quickly as they possibly can. And here we have Jewish tradition telling us that sadness is not a hostile inner force, and sometimes instead of escaping it, we ought to turn to face it and walk right into its dark cloud.
In this session, Alan will bring sources to explain the middah of atzvut, itself, and explore the role it can play on our soul journeys (not just on Tisha b’Av, but in the mourning rituals of shivashloshim, and kaddish, etc.). In the spirit of Mussar, Alan will also address the need to be cautious about acknowledging and embracing our sadness even as we strive not to take the middah too far, which might be called depression or despair.

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