Vaeschanan 5775 – Tu B’Av

This Friday is Tu B’Av. The Sages mention that this is a great holiday. What is so special about Tu B’Av? How many people even celebrate it? How many people have even heard of it?

Many special things happened throughout history on Tu B’Av. But one thing that happened on Tu B’Av the single women used to go out to the fields and dance in a circle, while single men chose their mates. The women borrowed dresses from each other. (It should be pointed out that this was not a Sadie Hawkins dance where men randomly chose a woman by her looks. The men looked deeper than just what the women looked like. It was a different world back then.)

Why did they need to dance in a circle and why did they borrow dresses from each other?

Tu B’Av means the 15th of Av (Tu is tes and vav, which equals 15). The word Av is made up of the letters Aleph and Bais. The Apter Rav says, that a different way to read Tu B’Av is the 15th of the Aleph Bais (Hebrew alphabet). The 15th letter of the Hebrew alphabet is the letter Samech, which is a circle. Tu B’Av is about a circle. When you have a circle, all of the sides are the exact same distance from the middle. No side is closer and no side is farther.

This answers why the women danced in a circle. It is because they wanted to show they were all equal. No one was greater. No one was more honored.

They borrowed dresses from each other to also show they were all equal. The less wealthy women would be embarrassed dancing in their rags while rich women wore fine jewelry. Instead, they all felt equal because the poor and wealthy both wore borrowed clothing. No one was higher. They were like the sides of a circle – all equal.

What a great lesson!

Good Shabbos!
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to see previous Divrei Simcha on the Parsha, please go to OR > Torah Study

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