The Chai Times // the Night is Bright

Aug 04, 2023 7:06 pm


A beautiful thought from the Rebbe adapted by my friend Rabbi Mordechai Lightstone:

From the middle of the month of Av, this past Wednesday, the sun begins to set noticeably earlier. This date, the 15th Av, Tu b’Av, is considered one of the most festive days on the Jewish calendar. "There was never a day as festive for the Jewish people as the Fifteenth of the month of Av and Yom Kippur," the Talmud says.

Why is it that the 15th of Av, is considered the most festive day - when other holidays, such as Purim and Simchat Torah - seem to be far more joyous?

The Arizal, the great 16th century Kabbalist, explains that the 15h of Av comes in the middle of the Jewish month when the moon (to which the Jewish people are compared) is full at its brightest. Yet surely other days, Sukkot or Passover, which also are on the 15h of the month, are more festive?


The answer can be found in the trajectory of the month. Tu B’Av comes after the Tisha B’Av, the mournful 9th of the month. The true light of the holiday can best be appreciated only after the darkness of what proceeds it. From our saddest moment comes our greatest joy.


Intriguingly, this moment of rejoicing from the dark comes specifically when the days themselves become shorter, the nights longer. The darkness of night itself becomes not a source of concealment, but a vessel for the greatest light.


As Maimonides writes “even though it is a mitzvah to study during the day and at night, it is only at night that a person acquires most of his wisdom.”

We become the agents of light, by illuminating the night with the Torah we study. Winter is coming, and it’s an amazing thing.

Wishing you an uplifting Shabbat,

Rabbi Mendy & Mussy

p.s. As always, we would love to chat with you over coffee or drinks, about Judaism, or just life - reply to this email.


Did you know? YJP is not funded by any umbrella organization, not locally and not nationally (no funding from Chabad HQ). This gives YOU a great opportunity. It means that every donation has outsize impact creating programs and events and Judaism in this community. Puls, every contribution donated stays right here in this community.

An easy way to contribute: join the Chai Society at

Not only are you having a massive impact and being a true mentch, but you also get benefits - free First Fridays and special swag.

Again that's

Don't hesitate to contact us for other sponsorship and partnership opportunities.


Of interest:

It hap­pens at least once a month: I’m walk­ing to the sub­way and I find myself approached by a young man with tzitzit. “Excuse me, are you Jew­ish?” he asks. I nev­er know how to respond. I am Jew­ish, yes, but I’m uncom­fort­able being accost­ed. I like to prac­tice Judaism on my own terms rather than at a stranger’s behest. When approached, I say that I’m too busy. Too busy to lay tefill­in, or too busy to shake the lulav and etrog, or too busy to accept a free box of mat­zo. And yet — slight irri­ta­tion in my voice aside — part of me appre­ci­ates and even depends on these tiny moments of out­reach. It’s nice to know that, if I ever need­ed mat­zo, some­one would offer me some. It’s nice to know that if I ever felt alone in the world, some­one would tell me I still belong.  


Birthday, anniversary, or any special occasion coming up for yourself or a loved one? Or maybe you want to advertise your company? Consider supporting the community by dedicating The Chai Times email for $180. Click HERE and help spread the love 😊 Thank you!

📅  Upcoming Events: 

Make your life easy! Subscribe to the YJP Public Google Calendar and never miss an event.

Weekly Shabbat Services: (on hiatus until August 5)

  • Shabbat morning services 10:20 am
  • Torah discussion and reading 11:00 am (sharp)
  • Followed by Kiddush and Cholent

Exact dates TBD - Kabbalah Course on Zoom with Rabbi Goldshmid - 4 weeks

August 4 - First Fridays


August 17 - The Loewy Law Firm WHITE PARTY - biggest party of the year



🌱 Chai Society: 

Special thanks to the Chai Society members who donate monthly to support YJP events and activities.

Yankee Andrusierׁ • Ronit Baum Carolina Bueno Marc Cooper Nate Firebaugh • Aviva Frank • Paulina Flasch Matt Ford • Pavel Gitnik • Sarah Guccione • Max Goldberg • Ari & Sandra Hoffman • Noah Kagan • Ben Marchiony Michael Nadel • Yoni Oettinger • Dafnee Orduz • Noah Sinai • Daniel Speiss • Cindy & Mark Sichel • Dustin Tropp • Chaim & Amanda Pollak • Avremi Zippel • Ian Zur

Join the Chai Society here - make a monthly donation and support the programs and events you love.

Together, we’re High Energy!


Shabbat Eikev
Light your candles at 8:05 pm
in Austin, TX
Shabbat Shalom, friend!

Follow us on social media: Twitter | Facebook Instagram

Support Chabad YJP's mission to build community and curate epic experiences for young Jews in Austin!

Share this email, invite friends, join a committee, or donate at