“If not for this day, there would be countless insignificant Josephs in the marketplace.” So said one of the greatest Josephs, one of the major rabbis of the Talmud. Which day? Shavuos -- the day when Israel stood at Sinai and heard the Ten Commandments being pronounced by their Giver. Shavuos was the day when Israel became a people in the fullest sense, and it still is, because it is our annual day of rededication to the principles that shaped us.
This book takes us back to those thrilling days at Sinai, as we watched Moses disappear up the mountainside and return with the Divine invitation to accept the Torah -- to which we answered, “We will do and we will hear!”
It leads us through centuries of history and tradition, custom and ritual, teachers and students, challenge and triumph.
Sefiras HaOmer -- the days of counting toward the climactic event; Lag B’Omer -- the day of respite from tragedy, of a suspended sunset, and delirious joy; Shavuos re-enacted, generation after generation. It’s all here.
This book is filled with insights that will shed light on familiar observances. And its stories are a revelation in themselves -- including the one that brought a Jew back to his roots during the Gulf War.
Special features of this volume are the Book of Ruth, with the famous ArtScroll translation and marginal notes, and an Overview that sheds light on the deeper perspectives of the festival and what it represents.
This is a book that is valuable and enlightening, that adds depth to the day when our Torah was given.