Monday, May 9, 2011

Chag Sameach... Today? Tomorrow?

Chag Sameach... sort of!

Yes, while today is the 5th of Iyar, the true calendarical date of the declaration of the creation of the modern State of Israel, the commemoration, starting with Yom HaZikaron, were pushed on a day, in consideration of preventing chilul Shabbos in preparation for any Yom HaZikaron events taking place on Motzei Shabbos.

Last year I was unaware of the day-shifting and accidentally said tachanun on the 5th of Iyar. I'm am happy to report that I didn't make the same mistake again this morning, since my chevrusa thankfully reminded me of pushing-off last night. Further, the gabbai of the minyan where I davened Shacharis knocked on the bima and continued from chazaras hashatz to the layning, skipping over tachanun. There was no hallel said, though it was announced they would say hallel without a bracha tomorrow, the celebrated day of Yom Ha'atzma'ut.

I wrote at length about my views on Yom Ha'atzma'ut last year - please check it out if you have a chance. I don't have too much to add, but I wanted to point out a few things.

First off, everyone should read Rabbi Maryle's post on Emes Ve-Emunah on the subject of hakaras hatov on Yom Ha'atzma'ut, which I think is a great, very well written piece.

Second, has created a great lip-sync video for K'naan's song "Wavin' Flag," which is fantastic (the video contains music):

Back to my own additional chiddush for this year. Related to an idea I that dawned on me during my Yom Hashoah-inspired meditations in my Ma'ariv Shemonah Esrei (see the bottom), I had a bit of a revelation during Shacharis this morning.

I was looking for some personal insight to make my davening more meaningful instead of being another wrote repetition of prayers I had said many times before - this is a particular point I've been working on more since that greatly influential Ma'ariv Shemonah Esrei. While reciting the bracha of Teka B'Shofar Gadol it hit me.

In this particular bracha, we ask for HaShem to have the great shofar sounded, the one which will herald the arrival of Moshiach and the beginning of the Messianic Age of world peace along with the rebuilding of the Beis Hamikdash. Though we have yet to hear this great and powerful shofar blast heralding Moshiach's imminent revelation, I do think that the rest of the bracha has (at least) begun to materialize in the last 63 years.

We ask HaShem to raise the neis (banner/flag) that will be the sign to gather in our exiled brethren. We request that HaShem will then gather all of these dispersed Jews from the four corners of the Earth, and conclude with bracha that declares HaShem's role as the One who gathers the dispersed ones of His nation Yisrael.

Pausing to think about the words composed by Chazal centuries ago, I couldn't help but envision the Israeli flag as a fulfillment of this longed for prayer:

(Picture courtesy of Wikimedia)

We have literally seen Jews from all over the world return to their homeland. On this point, I don't care whether it was motivated by religious conviction, secular philosophy, government invervention (IE for Russian and Ethiopian Jews), getting kicked out by Arabs from their homes, or any other reason anyone has had to go home. It is abundantly clear to me that the Yad HaShem has been at work, and we are finally seeing movements at work which will lead to the Messianic era when all Jews will live in their homeland and world peace will reign supreme.

Yes, Israel isn't perfect. We can all understand that, even the most ardent Zionists out there. There is no reason any Jew living today should not commemorate the founding of the state in some fashion - to each his/her own in terms of level of celebration and expression.

May we celebrate many more commemorations of Yom Ha'atzma'ut, may those celebrations be eclipsed by the celebrations that will take place when the final geulah will be complete, and we can all join together as one nation saying Hallel in the Beis Hamikdash for the great wonders HaShem has done for us.

1 comment:

  1. Your yom haatzmaut would certainly be more meaningful if you were actually in Israel... so hopefully in the meantime you have your hallel to make you feel less guilty about living in america


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