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We are all connected

On May 26, we will celebrate Shavuot. Shavuot is a time of great celebration for us, commemorating the giving of the Torah to Moshe on Mount Sinai. It is a time to reflect on our relationship with our traditions and our commitment to a life of justice.

This year, for the first time, we will be doing the traditional "Tikkun Leil Shavuot" by staying up all night studying Torah.

The most common reason for this custom is that the Israelites overslept on the morning of receiving the Torah and God had to wake them up with thunder and lightning, and to make up for it, we stay up all night to prepare to receive the Torah.

Another reason mentioned in the Zohar is the comparison of the people of Israel to a bride preparing for her wedding: The night before the wedding, she stays up with her friends to take care of her makeup, jewelry, wedding dress, etc., just as we, the "bride of God," prepare for the wedding.

In this analogy, God is the bridegroom and the Torah is our marriage certificate.

Marriage is something that brings joy: two people who love each other come together with their family and friends and celebrate their love with each other. Marriage is also a commitment, not only a declaration of love for the other, but an everlasting bond between two separate people who want to share their lives together, for better or for worse.

As we come together to celebrate this special holiday, let us take a moment to reflect on the significance of this day. The giving of the Torah is the foundation of our nation and the basis for our moral and ethical beliefs. It reminds us that we are not alone in this world, but part of a larger community bound together by our shared traditions and values.

Reading the book of Ruth reminds us of the importance of loyalty and dedication to our community. Ruth's unwavering commitment to Naomi is a powerful example of the kind of love and compassion we should strive for in our own lives.

In many ways, Shavuot is a celebration of the power of community. It is a time when we come together to reaffirm our commitment to each other and to our shared values. It is a reminder that we are not just individuals, but part of something larger and more meaningful.

As we celebrate Shavuot, let us remember that we are all connected. Let us strive to be a light in the darkness and spread kindness, compassion and love wherever we go. Let us continue to build a world filled with justice, peace and righteousness.

May this Shavuot be a time of renewal and rejuvenation for all of us, and may we be blessed with the strength and wisdom to continue to live our lives in accordance with the teachings of the Torah. Amen.

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