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Dance of Redemption
Our sages say: “There were no holidays in Israel like the 15th of Av (and Yom Kippur).” We are talking about a special brand of joy and celebration, similar to what we will experience with the future Redemption.

The joy of Redemption is likened by our sages to a dance that G-d will make with the righteous. G-d will be in the center and all the righteous will point and say, “Behold, here is our G-d, we awaited Him and he saved us. This is G-d in Whom we placed our trust, we will rejoice in his salvation” (Isaiah 25:9). In other words, the righteous will palpably sense the great revelation of G-dliness and therefore their rejoicing will be very great.

The 15th of Av has a special connection to Redemption. The seeds of Redemption were planted on the 9th of Av, and it will reach full fruition on the 15th, just as the moon is full on the 15th. On this day, the daughters of Jerusalem would go out and dance and meet potential marriage partners (all in the spirit of modesty!). Their dance symbolizes the future dance of the righteous when Moshiach comes.

(There are some interpretations that say not only the girls of Jerusalem went out dancing but all the daughters of Israel. Daughters of Israel in turn can refer to the daughters who lived in the Land of Israel or all Jewish daughters worldwide. Either way, the Rebbe explains that in fact all daughters went out to dance, but there were various levels of rejoicing—first level being all Jewish women, then the daughters who live in Israel, with the peak being those who live in Jerusalem.

Similarly, there will be different levels of tzadikim participating in the dance, with different levels of rejoicing.

As long as the Temple is not rebuilt there are no special customs or celebrations associated today with the 15th of Av, other than not saying Tachanun. Nevertheless, it is a day of rejoicing beyond all boundaries, bringing us closer to the perfect joy we will have in the time of Redemption.

References: Talmud Bavli Taanit 26b, 31a, see Rashi. Magen Avraham on Shulchan Aruch Orach Chaim, ch. 131, para 15. Appendix to Shulchan Aruch Adhaz, Orach Chaim 131:8. Sichah of 15 Av 5746, Shabbat Devarim 5751, Sefer Maamarim Melukat vol. 4 p. 347.
 

 


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