Shavuot is in tonight and it's actually interesting that of all the holidays that come and go this one you can’t really tell is coming up. It's more of a quiet knowing without the celebratory fanfare before or after just a whole country of people getting ready to eat some serious dairy. Shavuot is one of these silent holidays that commemorates the giving of the Bible. Its traditionally celebrated by staying up all night learning, fresh flowers, and dairy foods. The idea is that the Jewish people slept in the day of the giving of the Bible when there should have so much excitement that people wouldn’t be able to sleep. So, to make up for that, people who celebrate study or pray the whole night long. As the laws of Kosher weren’t yet given for meat products people eat dairy and the fresh flowers are to remind us of mount Sinai. In the past when the temple stood people would travel up to Jerusalem for this holiday as such there is still a big influx of people coming into the city and hundreds will stream down to the western wall for sunrise prayers.

 

Its interesting to note how these holidays impact this city so profoundly. Whole streets are shut off to traffic and buses don’t run. Although there are the few taxis and restaurants open the majority of the city comes to a quiet halt as do we. Still we are never silent for long and production will pick up again soon enough. So until then we wish those celebrating a wonderful holiday and for those of you like Avi who refuse to eat dairy, we wish you luck.