October 5, 2018
26 Tishri 5779
Candle lighting: 6:09 p.m.
I have always found it a bit confusing that the Jewish “day” actually starts in the evening, after sunset. Whether it comes to figuring out the right day to put on a ketubah (a Jewish marriage contract) for a wedding ceremony that takes place on an afternoon but after the sun has set, or the correct day to attend services to say the Mourner’s Kaddish on the anniversary for a loved one who passed, at times, it seems unnecessarily complicated.
Nevertheless, the rationale behind it, can be traced back Bereshit, this week’s Torah portion. In our parsha, we read about the creation of the world. At the end of each day of creation, it says: “VaYeHi Erev VaYehi Boker,” “it was evening, and then it was morning.” According to traditional rabbinic commentators, because evening comes before morning, the day starts with the evening.
Similarly, the Mayaan Shel Torah points it was dark, before it could be light. This teaches us that the beginning of righteousness is pain, but in the end, there is peace.” Or – “that it is always darkest before the dawn.” He continues by reminding us that in Judaism, Shabbat is celebrated at the end of the week: “we must work hard and toil during the week, but that ultimately, we are rewarded with Shabbat, as a day of joy, a day of rest, and a day at peace.”
My hope for all of us is that this Shabbat, which comes at the end of of what was a wonderful, but particularly very busy, week for all of us, is that we may reap the benefits of a day of rest, and a day at peace.
Wishing you a Shabbat Shalom,
To read an archive of Rabbi Dorsch’s D’var Torah click here.