Darkest before the Dawn
People often use the phrase, "it is always darkest before the dawn" as an attempt to comfort others when they can't find anything else to say. I have said it myself, and even taken comfort from it myself, because, what's the alternative? I could give in to despair, but somehow, hope for better times keeps me going.On Tisha b'Av, one of the saddest days in the Jewish calendar; the day when both Temples were destroyed, we mourn, we fast, we read and chant long and depressing words written by survivors of destruction.Yet,come the afternoon of Tisha b'Av, the mood lightens. Why? Because the Mashiach, God's messenger who will appear to guide us to the Promised Land (Hopefully a peaceful land) will be born on this day! Two weeks later, on Tu b'Av, feasting and engagements are made, at least in traditional circles.
There is wisdom in the notion that, when it seems as if things are at their worst, PRECISELY then, that change will come. We feel it in our bones as the seasons pass. We notice it in nature when the bright, energetic green of new leaves deepens in to the more confident, dark green of mature growth, giving way to an almost palpable need to be something else, transforming into magnificent autumnal shades (that make so many of us swoon with delight), before the cycle goes through its necessary winter slowdown, seeding nature's joyful renewal.
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