For This Year’s Tisha b’Av

Here are three resources for Tisha b’Av — one new for this year, the other two reprised but hopefully still meaningful.


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What Gets Me

Not just the litany of destruction: Babylon, Rome, the first Crusade.
Forced out of England, and France, and Spain.
Or how on this day in 1941 the Nazi Party approved
“The Final Solution,” the mass graves, the gas chambers.

Or the old claim that we make matzah with their childrens’ blood,
or the cartoons that show us hook-nosed and greedy,
money-grubbing, conspiring, defiling the world
with our stubborn insistence that we deserve to exist.

What gets me is that these hatreds persist.
In every antisemitic flyer and QAnon meme.
In every synagogue shooting.
In the uneasy fear that we might be next.

And still somehow we’re meant to look inside, to do the work,
To seek justice for those who have it worse than we,
To make things right with those we’ve harmed,
And if we must, to die like our ancestors  –

– with the Sh’ma on our lips.

R. Rachel Barenblat

The above is a new piece for Tisha b’Av by R. Rachel Barenblat. If it speaks to you, feel free to use it and share it. Meanwhile, here are two other resources from our archives that we hope might speak to you:

May this year’s Tisha b’Av be what we need it to be, and may it move us closer to a world redeemed.