As a result of inner anger and the disappointment we feel towards G-d we tend to fall into a state of sadness; we begin to study Torah and perform mitzvot with a lack of joy. The AriZal makes a strong statement regarding this broken state and teaches that happiness is the central point of Torah living.
Feel & heal exercise of the day: think of a recent incident that makes you angry. Put your right hand over your heart, your left hand over your right. Take 3 deep breaths while repeating the following “I am letting go of this anger. I make room for healing love”.
It is brought down by the Ben Ish Chai ztk’l that during the daylight hours of the 25th of Elul we should light 5 candles. According to the Ben Ish Chai on this day we light 5 lights to ignite the 5 lights of chesed that descend onto the world this day. This year the 25th falls on Wednesday September 5th .
It is a very auspicious day for prayer.
This Tefillah should be said before lighting the 5 candles of the 25th day of Elul during the daytime.
After lighting the candles recite the following:
“ויאמר אלוקים יהי אור ויהי אור”
“אלוקים השיבנו והאר פניך ונושעה”
“אלוקים יחוננו ויברכנו יאר פניו אתנו סלה”
“קל ה’ ויאר לנו אסרו חג בעבותים עד קרנות המזבח”
“כי אתה תאיר נרי ה’ אלוקי יגיה חשכי”
“כי עמך מקור חיים באורך נראה אור”
“בית יעקב לכו ונלכה באור ה'”
Recite this line 10 times in a row “ואמרתם כה לחי ואתה שלום וביתך שלום וכל אשר לך שלום”
Recite this line 17 times in a row “אור זרוע לצדיק ולישרי לב שמחה”
This is a very special time to ask from Hashem to light up the dark world of exile and brings redemption b’rachamim and b’chesed.
The 25th of Elul is a holy day and we should be very careful not to get angry and give tzedakah. Fasting is prohibited on this day. We should partake in a festive meal of meat and wine and eat sweets (YAY!) and bless birkat hamazon with extra kavannah.
It is also a custom to read a bit from Sefer Bereishis describing creation as it says here (passukim 1-6):
The 17th of Tammuz is a day of great tragedy for the Jewish people. On that day, Moshe broke the Ten Commandments. Rashi explains that the tablets were made of special sapphire stones, large in size and too heavy for any human to carry, but the Divine light that radiated from the etched Hebrew letters helped ease the burden of carryng such large stones, making them miraculously lighter. However when the letters “witnessed” the sin of the golden calf they “flew off” the tablets returning them to their original weight ultimately causing Moshe to drop them.
Another explanation may be that Moshe broke them in order to discourage G-d from implementing His plan to annihilate the Jewish people for their sin and encourage Moshe to lead a new chosen nation. By breaking the tablets, Moshe was saying to G-d that he was a sinner along with the Jewish people and their demise was his as well.
Through this Moshe saved the Jewish nation even though their emuna was weak and their loyalty to G-d was questionable. Although Moshe had no way of knowing that G-d would later agree to provide a second set of tablets he understood his responsibility as the Jewish people’s leader; stand by your fellow man.
May we all merit to have the emuna and wisdom that Moshe showed on that day and save our nation from tragedies in this merit, Amen.