The month of Av אב according to Kabbalah


The first suggestion we make is to read what we said last year about the month of Av. What will be said this year will build on what we said last year.

Below are the links to the last few years' Blogs about Av. Please press your back button to return to this location after you read last year's Blog.

Comments for 5783

The Month of Av: which connects to Aryeh / Leo

Chodesh Tov.

Remember, Astrology is not about telling the future, nobody can do that. By understanding the energy of each month, we are able to navigate smoothly through the month, because one cannot act the same way every month. Every month has a different energy and it helps to know what that specific energy is. The Bnei Yissaschar says that a completely new existence comes into being every month. The Book of Formation, ascribed to Avraham Aveinu tells us that without knowing astrology, it is very difficult to lead a life without chaos.

May this article be an Ilui Neshamah for Chaim ben Moshe Aharon HaLevi.

It is good to try and understand the character traits of the lion to gain an insight into the energy of this month of Av. The “Mightiness of the Lion” is what this month is all about.

There is a saying: “as strong as a lion.”

Have you ever seen a lion or a pride of lions take down a big animal? They do it with ease. The lion is not afraid of anything.

He is King of the Jungle.

Shlomo HaMelech, said, “The lion is mighty among the beasts.”

Amos 3:8, “When the lion roars, who does not fear.”

People think Av is a month of suffering, however, the translation of Av, means “father”, which signifies HaShem’s compassion for us, like a loving father.

Psalm’s 103:13, “ as a father is merciful toward his children."

The Mazal of Av is the lion, which according to the Zohar, Zohar Chodesh Yitro, signifies mercy/rachamim. Don’t get fooled, Av can be a month of compassion and kindness.

Even though Av is considered one of the three negative months, only the first half is considered negative, the second half is actually a very positive and happy time.

Av is a month where the first half is one of complete judgement and the second half complete mercy. The month is actually called Menachem Av, which means to comfort us.

Tu B’Av is considered one of the happiest days of the year with Yom Kippur. Why is there such a difference between the beginning of the month and the end of the month?

First let’s put this month into perspective. Leo is considered one of the most powerful signs of the zodiac, because as we all know, the lion is considered the king of the jungle. He looks regal with his big mane and is very brave. All the animals give way when a male lion comes by. He is not the strongest animal in the jungle but we associate him with being the king of the jungle. Why?

Everything about this month is all about power, leadership and generally being the center of everything. Av in Hebrew means father. The Leo exudes power. The Tikkun of Leo is all about ego. They love to be the center of attention. Leo’s have the power and are natural leaders, but they have to realize that this power is a gift from HaShem and the best way to manifest this powerful energy is just to be a channel for HaShem. They need to realize it is all HaShem not them. If a Leo can get out of their own way and ego, they can rise to great heights. They have to realize that they don’t have to be the center of the universe all the time.

Leo’s need to be more understanding and sensitive. Being so powerful they sometimes don’t realize other signs struggle with many challenges in life they find easy and take for granted.

Leo’s are very generous as long as they are recognized as the giver. They see the big picture but many times overlook the details. They like to control because they have the power, however, they need to use their strength to help others, not dominate them. They need to be more sensitive and feel the pain of others around them.

The holiday of Pesach and Tisha B’Av are always connected. They will always fall on the same day of the week. What is the message of Pesach? Redemption. The message with Tisha B’Av is the same except that it is hidden in a very concealed way.

Tisha B’Av is actually called a holiday. We don’t say Tachnun on Tisha B’Av and after midday we rise from the floor. In the time of Mashiach, Tisha B’Av will become a holiday. We also know that the Mashiach will be born on Tisha B’Av.

The message of Av is hidden, because when Chazal talks about Tisha B’Av becoming a holiday, it is very difficult for us today to think of Tisha B’Av as a happy time. This time has always been a difficult time.

We all know about the tragedies that have befallen the Jews on Tisha B’Av; the spies in the desert, the destruction of both Temples, the start of the Spanish Inquisition, the start of the First World War, the first transports to the gas chambers during the Second World War started on this day and many more.

Tisha B’Av is the saddest day of the year and Tu B’Av is the happiest day of the year. How is it possible to have such a change in six days.

The same as it says in Adar, that we should increase our happiness from Rosh Chodesh Adar, from Rosh Chodesh Av until Tisha B’Av it says we should decrease our happiness.

From Rosh Chodesh Av, there are very strict rules of what we are allowed to do and what not to do. For instance we don’t shower with hot water and some people don’t even shower. We don’t wear clean clothes and we also don’t go swimming in rivers or the sea as it is considered dangerous. On Tisha B’Av itself it is a complete 24 hour fast with the same five restrictions as Yom Kippur; no eating or drinking, no washing, not applying cream or cosmetics, not wearing leather shoes and not having marital relations. Why all these restrictions???

A few days later the Gemara compares Tu B’Av(the fifteenth of the month) with Yom Kippur as the two happiest days of the year. Tu B’Av is the day of the year where there is complete unity in the cosmos. How? Tu B’Av is the full moon and on the full moon of Av we have the zivug(joining) with the sun who controls this month and the moon. That are natural soulmates. They are always talked about as a couple. (See my article below on Tu B’Av).

This is the paradox of this month. A person born in this month always has these two sides of the coin, the judgement and the happiness. The tikkun is to harness the powerful energy and use it to serve HaShem. When a Leo uses their power for HaShem they will become great.

The powerful energy of this month is because the celestial body connected to this month is the sun. This month draws energy directly from the sun, which is our life force in the physical world. Without the sun nothing would grow. Also for humans the best source of Vitamin D is the sun.

It is the left of the fire signs, which represents the judgement in this month. The letters of the month are Kaf and Tet. The line from the Ana Becoach is the fourth line. The Sefirah connected to this line is Netzach, Moshe Rabeinu, which connects us with victory, overcoming all your problems and endurance.

This is a very interesting line of the Ana Becoach. The first two words are “Barchem Taharem/bless us and give us strength.” We are asking for HaShem to bless us and give us strength to endure in our spiritual work, never to give up hope in this trying time. We don’t realize what a big deal it is to take the first step. We have to make the first step and then HaShem will help.

Also the middle two words are “Rachamei Tzidkatecha.” The acronym for these two words are the letters Reish and Tzadi, which connects to joy and happiness, and their numerology is 290, which is the same numerology as Miriam, Moshe’s sister. The make up the word “Raatz/to run.” We find this word in Genesis, 18:7, where Avraham ran to meet the guests. Also these two words are the exact middle of the Ana Becoach, the heart of this prayer, and connects everything together. With these two words we are able to enter the well of Miriam and drink from it. When we pray, our prayers first go to the well of Miriam, then to the Kotel and then up to the heaven. With this line of the Ana Becoach, it is a gateway to enter straight to the well of Miriam. Also anybody who needs a soulmate can also ask for one with this line.

According to the Zohar, (Zohar Chodesh, Yisro 31), the lion symbolizes Chessed. If this is true, then Av is a month of compassion and kindness. Even though the Temples were destroyed in Av, in the future we will see that it was all for Klal Yisrael’s benefit.

The name of HaShem this month is, Key Vav Yud Key. The first two letters are the wrong way around, connecting to the judgement of the first half of the month, and the last two letters are in the right order, connecting to the happiness of the second half of the month.

Rabbi Matityahu Glazerson, in his book: “Above the Zodiac”, says that essential nature of this month is hearing. The faculty of hearing can have a positive aspect, listening to Torah and good things or its misuse, listening to Lashon Hara, which can lead to impurity and destruction. He says that the misuse of this faculty of hearing is at the root of all the tragedies that the Jews suffered during the month of Av. The Midrash(Rabbah, Numbers, 14:1, says regarding the verse, “And the children of Yisrael wept that night,” refers to the night of the 9th of Av. They listened to the evil report of the spies and the unnecessary weeping that the Jews engaged in then brought about their having to weep in earnest, during this time, in the generations to come. All because they misused the facility of hearing. Conversely, the merit of Daniel, who stemmed from the Tribe of Yehudah, protects Klal Yisrael during Av.

The first nine days of Av are the most dangerous days of the whole year. The negative energy is so thick, you can literally feel it. BE VERY CAREFUL DURING THESE NINE DAYS!!!

The Yetzer Hara has complete control over this time and as I mentioned at the beginning of Tammuz, Tisha B’Av is literally the end of the year. There is a Midrash that says after Tu B’Av, they start organizing the chairs in the upper courts, getting ready for the new year. The yetzer hara is just waiting for you to slip up in these days. He wants to have something to say against you at Rosh Hashanah.

Remember, try to stay happy and don’t get angry. This is very important!!!!

We know how time seems to fly. Put your head down for this short time and soon it will be over.

Destruction harbors within it the seeds of repentance and redemption. This is the message of Tisha B’Av, one of hope. Remember with Teshuvah there is ALWAYS another chance. We have to believe 100% that HaShem will come and save us. Without this it would be very difficult to go on. May HaShem bring Mashiach soon and turn Tisha B’Av from a fast day into a holiday.

Chodesh Tov.

Yortzheit’s this month of Av:

Rosh Chodesh Av is the Yotzheit of Aharon HaKohen and his son Elazar. Aharon represents mercy and is our channel to draw down mercy during this tough time.

3rd of Av, we have the Yotzheit of Rabbi Shimshon Ostropoly, who was a great sage who had Ruach HaKodesh. He wrote a very beautiful and powerful article about Pessach and said whoever reads it before Pessach will get many blessings and be saved from many problems that year.

In the middle of the nine days, on the fifth of Av, we have a small oasis. The fifth of Av is the Yotzheit/death anniversary of the Ari HaKadosh, Rabbi Yitzchok Luria. He sweetens the heavy judgement. We will have a late night study on Motzei Shabbat July 22 2023.

9th Av is the Yotzheit of the Chozeh of Lublin, who was a very big Chassidic Rebbe.

10th of Av- Rabbi Don Yitzchak Abarbanel.

- 15th of Av - Nachum Ish Gamzu- who always used to say, “Gamzu leTova/everything is for the good” for everything that happened to him, good and bad.

Amram ben Diwan-a Moroccan Sage and miracle worker.

Rabbi Shimon Libya of Tripoli- he wrote the famous song, Bar Yochai, which we sing on Friday nights.

19th of Av- Rabbi Yaacov Culi, author of Me’am Loez.

23rd of Av- Rabbi Yaacov Kanievsky, the Steipler Gaon.

26th of Av - Rabbi Yoel Teitelbaum-Satmar Rebbe.

27 of Av - Rabbi Yehudah Pataya, the biggest student of the Ben Ish Chai.

Shabbat Chazon.

The Shabbat during the first nine days of Av is called Shabbat Chazon and is a very powerful Shabbat.

Defer Techeiles Mordechai (Berzhaner Rav, vol. 2, Tehilim 116, citing the Stelisker) writes that one must pay special attention to his prayer on Shabbat Chazon because it has the power to uplift all his prayers from the rest of the year.

Because of the loss of the Temple, we are like poor people and the Zohar says that during the three weeks, our prayers are more readily accepted. Since the three weeks and especially the first nine days of Av are times when HaShem’s presence is deeply hidden and the world is shrouded in spiritual darkness, by contrast, the sanctity of Shabbat is greater. Thus we see that during this period, even though it is negative, there are opportunities to reveal a lot of incredible light. Don’t miss out on this opportunity.

Tu B’Av:

Most people don't really associate Tu B’Av with being a holiday, but the Gemara says that there are two auspicious days for Bnei Yisrael, Yom Kippur and Tu B’Av. Tu B’Av is one of the happiest days of the year. Why?

Let’s look at what was supposed to be the timetable when the spies returned. They returned on the 9th of Av. If the they had talked good about the land, then the Tabernacle would have been disassembled on the 10th of Av and the nation would have gone straight on their journey to Israel. The journey was a three day journey, the 11th, 12th and 13th of Av. They would have conquered the land on the 14th and on the 15th they would have been redeemed, built the Temple and declared Moshe, Mashiach. This is the power of Tu B’Av. It was supposed to be the day of Mashiach, a day of extreme happiness, comparable with Yom Kippur. However, we blew it when the spies came back with a negative report. They slandered the land, which was a big Chilul HaShem, and Moshe had to bargain with HaShem for forgiveness which He didn’t give. HaShem said: “Ad Matai/till when,” Numbers 14:27, will the nation provoke Me. He then decreed on that generation that they would die in the desert.

On Tu B’Av we can connect to the potential that could have been. May HaShem bring Mashiach soon. Amen.

There are other reasons why Tu B'Av is one of the happiest days, but most commentaries never discuss the day according to astrology. There is a very interesting reason from an astrological point as to why Tu B'Av is such a happy and powerful day and the day of love.

First let me state that astrology is a part of Judaism, but the science of astrology is only used to gather information about the different energy that occurs every month. (Nissan is not the same as Tishrei etc.) The idea is to use this information to have a better month. Our behavior in one month cannot be the same as the next month. Jewish astrology has nothing to do with telling the future, nobody can do that. To give a little background, most of our knowledge about astrology comes from the book, Sefer Yitzerah written by Avraham Aveinu. Some say Rabbi Akiva wrote it, but the main thing is the information which is incredible.

In Jewish astrology, we use seven celestial bodies, five planets(Mars, Mercury, Venus, Saturn and Jupiter), the sun and the moon. The three furthest planets, Pluto, Uranus and Neptune are too far away to affect the physical world. They are connected to the spiritual world and correspond to the three upper Sefirot. Every month is connected to one of these seven celestial bodies. Each planet connects to two months(total 10), the sun and the moon only to one month each, making a total of 12. (I have a chart of how this works if anybody is interested). Tammuz connects to the moon and Av to the sun.

Rosh Chodesh and the 15th of the month are the two most powerful days of the month besides Shabbat and the holidays. Rosh Chodesh is the seed of the month and inside the seed is the full potential of the month. If you look at a seed of an apple tree, you can imagine from that seed comes a big apple tree with beautiful fruit. The 15th of the month is full moon and is the total manifestation of the whole month. The 15th of the month is also important in the calendar. Both Pessach and Sukkot begin on the 15th. We also have TuBishvat and TuBav on the 15th and Purim is also connected to the 15th(Shushan Purim). From all this we see that the full moon is a very powerful time of the month.

The question to ask is what is special about the full moon of Av and why is it such a happy day and good for Shidduchim?

Every month on the 15th there is a zivug(unification) between the moon and the celestial body of that month. Ten months of the year, the zivug is between the planet of the month and the moon. Tammus the zivug is between the moon and the moon and Av is the zivug between the sun and the moon. Why is this zivug in Av so special?

The sun and the moon are the perfect soul mates. In many writings, Jewish and non Jewish, there are many stories about how the sun and the moon go together. We always talk about the sun and moon together. Their zivug is the perfect unification. The zivug on TuB'Av is the most powerful zivug of the whole year and this is why it is the day of love, because there is complete unity between the sun and the moon, like there should be between a man and a woman. When you have a zivug and unity like this anything is possible.

I saw it written somewhere, I don't have the source, but I think this is the reason Chazal chose this day as the day the girls of Israel would go into the fields all dressed in white and then the men would go and choose a bride. Tu B'Av is the perfect day for soul mates as the sun and moon are the perfect couple.

The energy is so powerful on this day that it does not only apply to a man and woman, it can also be any relationship, between business partners, family and friends etc. Tu B'Av is the day to strengthen all relationships. How do we do this?

Think about all your relationships and see which ones need fixing. Make a personal effort by phoning or writing to the person and just wishing them a good day and send them love. Remember the saying from Mishlei, 27:19. “As water reflects a face to a face, the heart of a man to a man”.

Just like a face is reflected in water, so to are the feelings of one person reflected in another. Use this power of love. Send love to people. Do extra Mitzvot, learn a little more, give some Tzedakah. Do something very special for your loved ones as this is the REAL day of love. This is very important. We have a big opportunity to connect to this powerful day, don't miss out. After Tisha B’Av we need to fill ourselves with as much positivity as possible.

Chodesh Tov and Chag Sameach.

Comments for 5779

The Month of Av: Leo

The Hebrew month of Av (or Menachem-Av, the consoler of Av) is the fifth of the twelve months of the Jewish calendar.

The name Av literally means "father". It derives from the root which means "to will" or "to desire". It is the month of the "low point" of the Jewish calendar (the 9th of Av, the day of the sin of the spies and the destruction of both the first and second Temples in Jerusalem) as well as the month of the "high point" of the Jewish calendar (the 15th of Av -- "there are no happier days for Israel than the 15th Av and Yom HaKippurim" (Mishnah Ta'anit 26:) Tu B'Av -- the day of finding one's predestined soul-mate).

This accords with the teaching of our sages that "the Mashiach is born on the 9th of Av." Relative to all other souls of Israel, the soul of Mashiach, who comes to redeem Israel from her state of (spiritual as well as physical) exile, is like a groom to his bride. After his birth on the 9th of Av he reveals himself to his bride and betroths her on the 15th of Av.

Av is the month during which many calamities befell the Jewish people. Of all these misfortunes, the most prominent is the destruction of both the First and Second Temples on 9th Av. Each time, destruction was followed by exile - once to Babylonia (420BCE) and once to Rome (70CE). Rome is identified with Edom, an exile which continues to this day.

The sign of the month is linked to the events which take place in it. In the sky of Av, a cluster of stars takes the image of a lion. The lion has arisen and is at its power. There is no escape.

The Tzeidah La-Derech alludes to the power of this sign over man, animals, metals and whole geographical areas:

It is a sign of fire, masculine, a day sign which brings illness. It is the sign of gold, silver, precious stones, and diamonds, and of the blacksmith. Those born under this sign are dominant over others, overpowering, quick to anger, passionate, effusive, true to their word and adept at fashioning ornaments of gold, silver and precious stones.

These are the conclusions of astrology. They do not take account of life beyond the influence of the stars. Jewish history does bear out some of these tendencies in two contrasting directions. The 9th of Av was the day of the destruction of the Temples and is a fast day. In contrast, the 15th Av is a day of joy.

In this month, we cultivate “correct hearing,” alluded to in the name of the tribe of this month, Shimon, which comes from the word for “hearing.” During the nine days from 1st-9th Av, Jews do not eat meat or listen to music, as a sign of mourning for the loss of the Temple. On the ninth day of Av we mourn for the Holy Temple, destroyed by the lion-like nations of Babylon and Rome—hence the association with the sign of Leo.

The letter governing this month, Tet (t), has the negative meaning of “quicksand,” but is also the first letter of the word “good” (tov), since we can reach the highest levels by transforming the lowest levels into good.

Above includes extracts from "Signs of the Times" by Gad Erlanger [Feldheim] and Rabbi Y. Ginsburgh

The Month of Av by Lea - Comment on Daily Zohar

Rosh Chodesh Av, mazal Arieh; new moon of the month of Av, sign of Leo, is entering today. It is known that Leos are passionate, grandiose, exuberant and quite generous people, being great providers. Leos are to be admired due to their innate long-range sight and sense of command (they may even ask for the opinion of others for some reason, but they actually rely on only on their own capacity, no wonder the regent of this sign is the sun and only the sun). Therefore, Leos are prone to be charismatic leaders, mobilizing all others toward their aim though not necessarily toward what the others are asking for, hence their difficulty to truly listen to others. Those who have relatives and close friends born under this glorious sign may lovingly say 'Leos are not born, they debut'! It is said that Leo people who master the 'Art of Heat' are a blessing; their warmth is contagious and they, and everybody around them, benefit a lot from that. However, when in imbalance, such warmth may be transformed into a wild heat and this may push them into self-sufficiency up to arrogance in a dramatic, sad, and enslaving way, all in order to keep the absolute control on everything and everyone drawing to their lives the undesirable flattery of the others. Diametrically opposed to the sign of Leo there is the unpredictable sign of Aquarius. Aquarius is a sign that loves to share mainly knowledge, for the sake of the own and others' freedom because knowledge frees and takes away the well-established delusions of power, enabling a better and more tranquil life not only to oneself but to all around and the world as a whole. Thus, say the experts, Leos can enjoy life with less distress by activating the cool Aquarius sense of freedom (remembering that everybody has all signs spread all over the individual astrological chart, hence, everyone is somehow under the influence of the sign of the month) - Chodesh Av Tov to all of us! From "Listening to HaShem's Messages in our Lives" (at on the month of Av and its sense, the sense of hearing: "

Becoming a Pure Channel for Greatest Reception (excerpt) (...) To learn Kabbalah we have to be a pure channel to listen and receive from our teacher. In general, one of the main ways to receive is to listen up. This fits in with the sense of the month of Av, which is ‘hearing’ (Sefer Yetzirah 5:8). Av is the month to develop sensitivities to hear the messages for growth that HaShem is sending us through the difficulties we come up against in our lives. “A whisper suffices for the wise, but a fool needs flagellation” (Midrash Mishlei 22). The more eloquently we decode HaShem’s messages for our lives the less we will need uncomfortable reminders. Removing Negative Expectations which Block us from Hearing The moth of Av is the month of the destructions of our Temples because of senseless hatred between us (Babylonian Talmud, Yoma 9b). Whenever people have a hard time getting along it’s usually due to communication problems and misunderstandings. The story which originally leads to the destruction of the second Temple was based on a misunderstanding and mix up between the names of Kamtza and Bar Kamtza (Babylonian Talmud, Gittin 55-56). When we feel animosity towards someone, it’s because we are not making the effort to really hear where that person is coming from. Bottom-line, most of the problems between people are due to our difficulty with truly listen to one another. We often have preconceived notions about what we expect the other person to say, which block us from really listening to them. Instead, what we are hearing is our own voice, which we read into theirs. For example, if we experienced a lot of criticism in our childhood, then we may read criticism into everyone’s words. If we have trust issues we may believe that people are saying things to take advantage of us and trick us, even if this may not be the case at all. When we keep showing suspicion, rather than openness to listen and receive what others have to offer, by way of the law of attraction, others may actually begin to harbor resentment. So, the month of Av is about fixing our relationships by removing negative expectations and really opening our hearts to hear what the people in our lives are telling us. Listening with our Hearts (excerpt) When we learn the skill of listening with our hearts, we may even develop a flair for detecting unspoken words, hearing what others are not telling us, but what they meant to say. Their facial expressions and body language may give it away. We can then be preemptive in our communication, saying words of comfort for unexpressed pains. A good practice for the month of Av is to listen intently to others and note the deeper truth behind their words. This takes time, patience and slowing down our fast-paced, multi-tasking, accelerated routine. (...) Strengthening Inner Hearing When Coming of Age Perhaps one of the reasons that people lose hearing when they grow older could be according to the principle of 'a turn for a turn' [/measure for measure - מידה כנגד מידה - Babylonian Talmud, Sanhedrin 90a]. When someone didn’t take proper advantage of the sense of hearing, then he may lose it. Moreover, being harder of hearing causes people to come closer to one another in order to be able to hear. When their external hearing is weakened it prompts them to strengthen their internal listening skills. This way HaShem helps people open their heart and grow closer as they gracefully age. Listening to the Words of our Own Prayer (excerpt) When we call out to HaShem in tefilah [/prayer] we expect Him to hear us, but do we hear our own prayer? (...) The Shema Israel [/Hear O Israel] prayer has its source in (...) Devarim 6:4, which not by chance is read during the zenith of the month of Av. As much as the Shema Israel – the centerpiece of Jewish prayer, is about unifying HaShem in the world, it’s also about amplifying our sense of inner hearing. When we open ourselves to truly hear with our heart, we open ourselves to hear the inner voice of our own Neshamah (soul). May we merit during the month of Av to really hear each other, HaShem, and the words of our own prayers. May we thereby fix our relationships and become a pure channel for love and acceptance, and may we merit hearing the prayers of the Kohen Gadol in the Beit Hamikdash/Temple!"

Ancient Wisdom about AV

Ancient Hebrew Astrology Connections

Name: Av אב

The meaning of Av is ancestors and in modern Hebrew has come to mean father - the closest male ancestor. The month of Av is frequently referred to as Menachem Av. Menachem means "will comfort". Since we will find that time is a significant part of the essence of Av, the future tense can become the present tense. This month is the comfort of the Children of Israel although many of them do not see this. This is because many people utilize the 9th of Av as a mourning day while the Kabbalists utilize the 9th of Av as a mourning the loss of the Mitzvot since the Mashiach is born on the 9th of Av. This year you may see the beginning of the peace treaty manifested on the 9th of Av.

Attribute: Listening שמיעה Shemeah Listening is a more intense form of hearing. The listener is truly focused on what is being heard. With this focus one can hear the "still small voice" within. This is a code phrase for the Voice of HaShem within each of us. The majority have forgotten how to listen to / for that voice of direction. Today i read a drash about the Parasha of Masei in which it is recommended to have some sense of which direction one is going. When at a crossroad and the tools of logic and intuition have failed to indicate a direction to take within the frame of your life. Sit down and wait. Having faith will only cause you to come to chaos. Let HaShem's voice direct you. When you sit down and wait you have the focus to "listen" to that "still small voice" within.

Ancient Tribal Connection: Issachar יששכר The Tribe of Issachar is referred to in the Tanach as "knowing of the understanding of time." In the times of the Temple and the Tanach, the other Tribes members would search out those members of Issachar and ask them about their individual futures. Many of the leaders of the Sanhedrin came from this Tribe. Please note the complete phrase that describes Issachar. It is not "understanding of time" nor is it "knowing of time." It is both the knowing and the understanding. These are code words dealing with the Tree of Life. This is what we receive when we utilize the attribute of listening. Remember the Torah Scroll is heard not read by everyone on Shabbat. Do you listen to the Torah Scroll or do you hear the Torah Scroll each Shabbat? The natural affinity of the Tribe of Issachar actually comes from its connection to the Land and to farming which was also done by the members of the Tribe. Issachar did Study Torah more intently than Zebulon yet they did not totally receive support from Zevulon. They farmed and raised animals as well.

Modern Tribal Connection: Shimon שימון Shimon is connected to harsh judgment which is why the Land that Shimon received was not unified. When one is around Shimon one is in a state of Judgment. Judgment can be difficult or for the righteous it is beneficial. All related to cause and effect of our own actions. In the first 10 days of Av we can mourn for the physical things like the destruction of the Temples and other calamities of the Plan of HASHEM that we call history or we can mourn for the loss of the Mitzvot due to the arrival of the Mashiach. Or we can celebrate the birth day of Mashiach. It is your free choice.

Tribal Totem: Chamor חמור Chamor means donkey. It is a code word for the physical world. The donkey animal has two attributes that relate to this month of Av. The donkey will carry any and all loads even the load of other people. This is why the attribute of Endurance is attributed to the donkey. The donkey also never loses track of time. He decides when it is time to move and when it is time to sit as recommended above.

Tribal Stone: Sapphire ספיר Sahpeer Sapphires have the quality of healing. The Sapphire comes from the same root as Sefirot which deals with counting. An aspect of healing is counting the time between the decision to do Teshuvah and the effect of the Teshuvah which ultimately removes the lack of health and restores one to complete health.

Tribal Herb: Myrrh מור Mor Mor is one of the 11 components of the Ketoret which actually is a tool to bring one closer to the Creator. The shoresh of the Myrrh in Hebrew is bitterness. Yet the quality of the Myrrh is sweetness. This duality is coming from the Tet as will be discussed below.

House: Children בית הבנים Bait Habanim Please note that the word Habanim can be translated as "the sea of sons or children" which includes both boys and girls. Since we know that sea is a code word for Torah we learn that by listening to children we learn how to live Torah. This is before children become adulterated by the limitations that their parents teach them. i am not meaning boundaries that all children need and crave to live in a society. i am referring to those limitations that cause us to become sophisticated and other wrong actions.

Zodiac Sign: Aryeh אריה Lion See below for information about the Zodiac sign of Aryeh. One hint regarding the energy of the month comes through the lion since Aryeh has a gematria of 216, the same as the Sefirah of Gevurah meaning judgment.

Tribal Flag: Blue and Black with the image of the sun and moon שחור דומה לכחול . This reflects the Holiday of Tu B'Av (15th of Av) which is the idea of the sun sharing all of its light with the moon. The sun represents male and the moon represents female. This is why Tu B'Av is referred to as the day of unity and the Hebrew Valentine's Day in the modern world.

Tribal Direction: East קדם and מזרח Kedem and Mizrach - There are two words in Hebrew that mean East. One word - Kedem has the meaning of "beginning" and the other word Mizrach has the meaning of "shining". Both relate to the rising of the sun which is the planet connected to the month of Av.

Essence of Av אב

The month of Av is the fifth month of the Hebrew year. The number five has many different Sefirotic perceptions and these also apply to the month of Av. Counting down from Keter the Sefirah is Gevurah representing Power - Judgment - Strength - Boundaries - Limitation on Loving Kindness which is Chesed. Counting up from the Malchut it is Tiferet which is discussed below.

The fifth month Av connects to the Sefirah of Hod (Starting from Chesed). This is hinted at by the meaning of the Hebrew word Av which in addition to "Father" also means "happening." Hod represents Malchut in the frame of the spiritual world. Malchut is manifestation which can be understood as relating to the English word "happening."

Five can also be considered connected to the Sefirah of Hod. As we will discuss below, Hod is considered the Malchut of the spiritual frame. Hod also represents appreciation and thankfulness. These are very good attributes to utilize during the month of Av.

The fifth Sefirot from below is Tiferet. Tiferet is also called Zeir Anpin by itself as it represents all of the Six Sefirot of Zeir Anpin. Tiferet embodies the energy of the sun. All of this is consistent with the energy of the Hebrew month of Av. These two connections to Hod are reflective of the dual energy of Av that comes through the letter Tet that created the Month of Av. We will discuss more of this below.

The months of the Hebrew year are connected to the Tetragrammaton. The Kabbalists teach that Tammuz, Av, and Elul are connected to the Upper Hey. In Kabbalah the Upper Hey represents Binah also called Emma or Mother. The Mother gives birth to all of the six attributes of Zeir Anpin. She represents the seed level for these six attributes. The Kabbalists teach that these attributes are the emotive passions or emotions. Av is the left column of the Upper Hey which is why it is a fire sign in Hebrew Astrology.

The name of the month Av is spelled Aleph Bet. In reverse order Bet Aleph is the shoresh of the shoresh Bet Vav Aleph. This three letter shoresh means to happen, to enter, or to come. It is clearly true that we are coming to the end of our year since there are seven Shabbats between the Shabbat after the Ninth of Av (see below) and Rosh Hashanah, the Day of Judgment. Due to this fact we enter the process of Teshuvah. Of course, the first Nine days culminating in all of these "less than perfect happenings" seem to be a different energy than the last 15 days of the month which seem to have the energy of Comfort. This is also why the month has been given the nickname of Menachem Av. This phrase translates as either comforting the father or Father's comfort. The difference between these two translations is the difference in the energy between the first 10 days of Av (representing the hardest part of the negative three weeks) and the last 20 days bringing us to the comfort of our Father and His promises of the Redemption, the return from exile, and the coming of Mashiach. All of these things depend upon your and my level of Teshuvah. Teshuvah means "To Return to HaShem." Did you know that you had left HaShem? This is actually one of the purposes behind the energy of the month of Av.

Let me explain a little more. Kabbalah teaches a metaphor that when we do something wrong, we separate the letters of the Name. This is also explained as "we are leaving HaShem" because we are related to the lower Hey which is the letter that is separated by our negative action. WE ALL LEAVE HASHEM AT ONE TIME OR ANOTHER. The dual energy of Av helps us realize that we are separated. This is one of the aspects called "Mourning for the destruction of the Temple" and also celebrating the fulfillment of the Building of the Third Temple.

Here are the Letters of the Month and the Tetragrammaton Permutation for the Month of Av

כ ט הויה

The Tetragrammaton permutation comes from the first letters of four words in the Verse Devarim (Deuteronomy) Chapter 27 Verse 9. Here are the four words: הסכת ושמע ישראל היום . The word for word translation is "listen," "hear," "Israel," and "this day". The two different words used to inform the Nation to hear and to listen indicate the two different energies of the month.

Now let's look at the permutation of the Tetragrammaton for the month of Av and what we can learn.

The Tetragrammaton is normally spelled יהוה. When the Yood is in the first position, the first position is normally considered the World of Atzilut (Emanation). The second position normally has a Hey and is considered the world of Brea (Creation). The third position normally has a Vav and is considered the World of Yetzirah (Formation). The fourth position normally has a Hey and is considered the World of Assiya (Action or Manifestation).

All of these worlds in the paragraph above relate to descriptions and teachings in Kabbalah. They are metaphors to help us understand and relate to these worlds that we do not see with our physical senses.

The word that is the Tetragrammaton is actually the Hebrew verb "to be" in a conjugated form. The Yood at the beginning of a Hebrew verb indicates action. Therefore, the Name of God translates into English as "Active Being." The ultimate essence of "Active Being" is transcendent power of love and compassion without regard to people's merit.

This normal permutation which is used in the month of Nissan puts the Name of God in its normal, proper, and optimal placement to provide for the maximum flow of the Beneficence of HaShem. In essence the Yood, in the World of Atzilut, allows for a concentrated point of connection to the World of Ain Sof or Endless World. The Upper Hey in Beria expands to support actual Birthing and Creation. The Vav then channels this energy of Creation into the Final Hey in the World of Malchut which is Manifestation.

When we look at the permutation for Av, we see the Tetragrammaton is in two different modes. The upper worlds (The Yood and Hey) are in the correct order yet in the wrong locations, and the lower worlds (The Vav and Hey) are in the wrong locations and the wrong order. Both of these conditions indicate a frame of judgment. In Kabbalah Judgment comes in two forms-Soft judgment (the last 20 days) and Harsh Judgment (the first 10 days). This double aspect of being in the wrong location and wrong order of the lower worlds help explain why the first 10 days are so judgmental and negative.

In essence the month of Av is a month that represents a duality. The first 10 days are part of the negative three weeks and there are many recommendations as to how to minimize this impact. Among them being neither to eat meat during this period nor to go to court during this period especially against a non-spiritual person. It is also recommended to utilize the 3 weeks meditation during the first ten days.

The last 20 days while still in a frame of judgment are less harsh (soft judgment). This is a period that brings us to contemplate our own mistakes and make amends so that we have the vessel to return to God or do Teshuvah.

The Letters of the Month

The letter Caf created the sun and the letter Tet created the constellation we call "Leo" or "Lion." In Hebrew the word for lion is Aryeh אריה. Aryeh has a gematria of 216 which connects to the word/Sefirah of Gevurah and also is the number of letters in the 72 Names. This is another aspect of the two energies. Caf represents the Crown, royalty, balance, and completeness. Tet represents the sexual organ. This is generally understood as a dual potential for either bliss or destruction, ecstasy or misery. The dual energy of this month comes from the letter Tet. Just as the sexual organ has two energies (sperm that brings life; urine that excretes waste), the month of Av has the two energies of the harsh judgment of the first 10 days and the soft judgment of the process of Teshuvah - Returning to HaShem.

Leo's receive their energy directly from the sun, and they are the only sign that falls under its influence. Because of this, Leo's believe that the whole world revolves around them. Confident of their power and abilities, they broadcast their self-assurance to the whole world. They are hard to ignore. This energy will impact all of us during this month of Av, this month of Leo. A Leo's weak point is the heart, and thus is prone to cardiovascular disease. Kabbalah tells us that a Leo’s role in the world is comparable to the heart’s role in the body. Both have been given the responsibility of pumping out and distributing all the energy that they receive. This is a recommendation on how to behave during this month. Share what you receive!

The two letters Caf and Tet have a gematria of 29 and a small gematria of 11. The number Eleven represents the negative system since it is one more than the 10 Sefirot. 11 also is the number of components in the Ketoret - Incense which is a Hebrew word that means draw closer. A word that has the gematria of 29 is Cozav spelled כזב. This word has the meaning of binding together. This is a good practice to implement during the month. Perceive everything as bound together. Also, try to bind everything together even when you perceive things as separated.

Of course this is easier said than done. One of the names for our physical world is the "world of separation." This is because this world is designed by HaShem to see everything as separate from everything else. I am separated from you, you are separated from other people, each animal and plant in the world is separated from every other plant and animal as well. This is of course an illusion. Even as we live in this physical world, we also live in the Ain Sof where everything is unified. By struggling to see everything unified instead of separated we achieve Tikune (correction). Here are two meditative exercises to help you with this process.

1. Meditate on the letter Pey which is formed by leaving a space that looks like the letter Bet in the middle. Try to see the letter Pey and the Letter Bet simultaneously.

2. Sit on a park bench and observe some children playing. Now close your eyes and imagine you are inside one of those children. Try to become one with the consciousness of that child.

Torah Readings in the Month of Av

Devarim - Shabbat Chazon. This will be the raw naked energy that is needed to withstand the onslaught of the negative system this week.

Va'Etchanan - Shabbat Nachamu - The Shabbat of Comfort

Eikev - Means heel as we work on the manifestation of comfort during the soft judgment period of Av

Re-eh - Means to see. This week we will receive the energy to see into ourselves as we receive the wakeup call of hearing the Shofar and doing the ritual of Slichot.

Holidays in Av

There are two Holidays in Av. One is on the 9th day and is called Tisha B'Av and the other is on the 15th day (the full moon) and is called Tu B'Av. As is seen from above about the dual energies these holidays are opposite energies as well. Or perhaps more accurately they are days of less intense and more intense aspects of the same energy. Let's discuss this possibility.

Tisha B'Av is a fast day - a fast that lasts 25 - 26 hours. In the heat of the sun a fast is the most difficult and i suggest for those who do fast they do the ritual suggested by the link below. Tisha B'Av is thought to be a day of national mourning. What are we mourning? Some say the destruction of the Temples (both of them - destroyed on the same day)! Some teach that we are mourning the dead throughout the centuries who died just because they were spiritual and/or Jewish - especially the 6 million who died in the Holocaust. The Kabbalists teach a very unusual aspect of mourning. They teach that Tisha B'Av is the birthdate of the Mashiach and therefore, we should be happy and excited over his coming and at the same time (unifying the two energies) we should be mourning the end of the opportunities presented to us by the Mitzvot.

The Mitzvot were created to help cleanse us so that we can reach a higher state of consciousness. A higher state of consciousness means being able to come closer to HaShem. When Mashiach comes this process of cleansing and elevating our consciousness will come to an end also. In a sense that is sad (only if we have not achieved all that we can achieve). I know this is sometimes very hard to relate to. Remember we are not mourning something physical - even when we read the words that seem to imply a physical aspect to the mourning. This understanding will help you relate to the true dual essence of the Ninth of Av.

Rabbi Isaac Luria has given us a very important meditation so that we can handle the energy in the universe during these three weeks.

  • Here is the link to the 3 Weeks Meditation, please use it at least once per day (3 times daily is recommended) during these three weeks.
  • Please use this 3 Weeks Meditation up to and through the sundown on the end of your fast. The year of 5779 the 17th of Tammuz fell on a Shabbat. We do not fast on Shabbat; (Yom Kippur is an exception) so we delayed the fast until Sunday. The Fast of Tammuz this year of 5783 was Thursday July 6 2023. It started at sunrise Sunday morning and was completed about 9 PM Sunday evening. The meditation should cease after that time.

    Energy Days

    The Holiday of Tu B'Av is only 6 days later on the full moon day. It actually is the highest non Holiday energy of any day in the solar year. This is because the Sun created the month of Av and on the full moon is sharing completely the most energy that it can share. This represents the unification of the energy of the sun which is male with the energy of the moon which is female, the ultimate Zvug or connection. This is why the day is referred to as the Hebrew Valentine's Day.

    Historically the girls of Jerusalem and Sefat (Safed, Israel) would go out to the fields in borrowed clothing (so that they were all equal and not made to feel inferior in any way). The men of Jerusalem and Sefat would also go into the fields and ask each girl to for a betrothal. In the Book of Judges there is a story of the re-population of the Tribe of Benjamin on this day using exactly that ritual. It was not a happy time for the Nation; yet it was a happy time for the people involved who found a way around their vow. Let me explain briefly

    The story in the book of Judges says that 11 Tribes vowed not to give their daughters as wives to the Men of the Tribe of Benjamin for some action that Benjamin had done. These 11 Tribes went to war against Benjamin. After the war there were no more women from the Tribe of Benjamin as they had been killed during the battles. The 11 Tribes were repentant as they realized that they no longer had 12 Tribes which is necessary for the complete vessel of the Children of Israel. Yet they had vowed not to give their daughters as brides. So they devised the "Sadie Hawkins Day" ritual as described above. The nation was sad that they had killed their brothers and sisters of the Tribe of Benjamin and they rejoiced at being able to rebuild Benjamin through this ritual-again the dual energies of Av.

    I hope you celebrate Tu B'Av. If you are single go to the fields (parks of your community - go in borrowed clothing- especially white clothing). You might be surprised at whom you meet. Of course, as always with Kabbalistic rituals it is necessary to know it first and then you can experience it rather than the more traditional western value to need to see it in order to come to believe it.

    For couples it is a good day to renew your life commitment on a personal level and imitate the Zvug between HaShem and the Shechinah. In whatever way you find that appropriate.

    This year of Tu B'Av 5783 is on Wednesday August 2 2023.

    Tzadikim who Left in Av

    Our Tzadikim have given us a great tool. Themselves! Their Hilulah is the opportunity to utilize their connection to the Creator to make our connection easier. The method we use is to light a Yahrzeit candle (25 hour candle) and learn about the Sage. This strengthens our connection to the Tzadik and through that connection allows us to reach the Creator more easily.

    It is recommended that one mentions the Names of the Tzadikim every evening at the start of your evening prayer connection or just prior to going to sleep each evening.

    The fifth of Av is also a positive high energy day even when it is within the three week period. The ARI Rabbi Isaac Luria left this world on this day. He did so since this is the 5th day of the 5th month. This is Hod SheBe Hod in the frame of the months. The ARI left in the same Sefirah that Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai left on Hod She Be Hod in the frame of the Omer. We will be teaching an late-night study of his teachings that night. Our connection to this energy will commence on Motzei Shabbat night July 22 2023 at 9:00 PM West Coast Time and will go until i run out of energy or there is no one left on the conference call.

    Tribe and Tribal Leader connected to Av

    Here are the connections to the Tribe for the month and the Leader of that Tribe from our website, with information about the Nasi and the attributes dealing with this month.

    The Tribe for the month of Av is the

  • Tribe of Shimon.

  • I suggest you spend some time during this month checking out the attributes of the name Shimon and the Name of the Nasi who gave the dedication and his consciousness of why he gave what he gave. Remember not all of these attributes are positive and with the tool of "Binding by Striking" we can correct them and transform them into positive aspects.

    Practical Tools to adopt in Av

    Here are strategies to adopt for this month of Av that will help keep you in control of your emotions. Yet remember the most effective tool to keep you in emotional control is Binding by Striking especially step one that of STOPPING YOUR REACTION.

    1. Delay Interactions especially confrontations: The month of Leo puts out an energy that makes people think they are Royalty. People MUST listen to them is how they feel. This is especially true during the first 10 days. That feeling is not always true, and it is best to delay interactions to give us the opportunity to diffuse those feelings.

    2. Review Relationships: Starting after the 15th of Av (Full Moon Day) review the people we know. Who do we attempt to stay away from? Who have we had conflicts with that we still harbor grudges or anger? Who would we like to make up with? Do not do anything but make a list of these people and past actions so that we can review this list later. The energy of Av is conducive to making the list while the energy of Elul is conducive to the process of Teshuvah - Returning to HaShem.

    3. Do not Speak or Listen to Loshon Harah - Evil Speech: Since the energy of Leo makes us feel that we are royalty, and we all know royalty is better than common people, we have a tendency to speak Loshon Harah during Av. Evil Speech is TRUE. It is not a lie. EVIL SPEECH is TRUTH that makes another person lower. It is disparaging towards others. Let me give you an example that is very common and people do not think about it. You are standing at a cocktail party with two other people. You say to one of them "You really look great in these clothes. This is really your color." What you may not be aware is the other person feels hurt since you did not say anything about them. That hurt gets justified in an anger towards the person who is complimented. Even though you said the truth you created a conflict between two people. This is one of the things that you will be asked about on your judgment day. I strongly recommend that you read the rules of Loshon Harah. You can get it in your email for free from the Chofetz Chaim Heritage Foundation.

    4. Share with People: This is a month that petty conflicts arise (soft judgment). The way to heal these is to go out of your comfort zone and share with people. Share your time. Share your strength. Share your efforts. And Share your resources. Share with people you normally share with and ALSO THOSE you do not normally share with. Write out your Tzedakah checks early even if you do not mail them. Make your intentions known to the universe. Share from a generous consciousness. Do not give to the point of being resentful. Share for the sake of sharing. Remember what Kabbalah teaches. The more you share the more you can permanently receive. In 2008 when the American economy went down, one of the reasons was people did not do these actions of sharing during Av and Elul. Do not think of this sharing as coming from Royalty to Commoners which is the way the energy will let you feel. Think of this sharing as being the commoners were created for you (the Royalty) to save your life.

    Expand your awareness of HaShem Since you will be thinking you are Royalty it is important to remember that HaShem created you. Look around you. What has HaShem shared with you in your life? How has HaShem blessed you? Study the words of Psalms and Proverbs. Read the book of Job. Learn to be magnanimous.

    The influence of the Aryeh, which means Leo in Hebrew, is on all of us during the month of Av.

    Our ego constantly convinces us that we know it all—that we alone are the architects of our own success. Humility is therefore the key word of the month. Go out and ask for help—from the Light and especially from people with whom you feel competitive. Be careful of false humility. Humility means know who you truly are and also what the other person in your life at this moment truly needs. This is the gift of Aryeh to each and every person this month. You just have to ask the questions "Who am I? and What does HaShem want me to do?" for the universe to try to give you the answer. Of course you must be open to receive the truthful answer the universe is showing you.

    The Tikune in Av

    If your lunar north node is in the Zodiac sign of Av, your Tikune is in Aryeh or Leo in Hebrew.

    If you do not know where your north node is within your astrological chart send me your birth date birth location and birth time to I will send you information on how to find your north node and your personal Tikune.

    In the words of the Kabbalah Center:

    The person with a tikune in Leo carries the former life of an Aquarius into this life. You are an individual who is set apart. In your previous incarnation you were considered important and unique, and you have brought tremendous inner power, ample creativity, and fierce ambition with you into this life. You were never a model of discipline, however, and you still seek originality at any cost. You are a rule breaker. As a result, you may have difficulty getting others to take you seriously.

    Although keeping yourself apart has strengthened you, you overcame doubts by confronting them. Relationships meant the world to you, but you were always afraid of being abandoned. You even tolerated abuse in order to maintain closeness, and you always had the feeling of not receiving in return for what you had given. You let relationships dominate you, and because of this, you never developed to your full spiritual potential.

    In your previous incarnation, you had the opportunity to rise from abject poverty to the heights of affluence, and these opportunities will present themselves again in your present incarnation—if you learn to exploit your inner strength. You have been severely scarred by your lack of discipline, which in previous incarnations prevented you from focusing on real goals. In your life as an Aquarius, you already had an acute sense of justice and equality. Your energy was utilized now and again for defending noble causes, but you preferred to deal with masses of people rather than with individual human beings. You see yourself in the future rather than in the present.  

    The tikune in Leo points you toward abandoning desire for superficial originality in favor of developing your capacity to serve humanity. You must pursue this path for yourself, not for the eyes of others. You have, in fact, more than one key from your previous incarnation to use in this one. Your ambition will help you find a true and noble cause through which you will share your gifts with humanity. Your tikune suggests that you will be given the opportunity to lead, provided that you do so in a selfless way. Along this path, you can use your inner strength, creativity, and originality to reveal new opportunities in the world around you.

    In conclusion

    Enjoy this month. You will feel like royalty because you are. Just don't look at everyone else as your servant. Realize that they are royalty too and you are there to serve them!

    Kol Tuuv