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Tu BiShvat

Tu BiShvat

10 Things to Know about Tu Bi'Shvat

Published on Monday January 21th, 2019

It is written in the Torah (Devarim 20:19): "For man is a tree of the fields".

"We see that everything about trees applies to humans as well. Many things can be learned from the tree for the divine service of man.'' (Ba'al Hasulam)

10 ideas for prayer and divine service, especially on the day of Tu BiShvat:

1. The Sefer Hatoda indicates that on the day of Tu BiShvat, there are some minor changes from an ordinary day. Some customs of a festival apply. For example, We do not say the prayer of Tachanun on the day of Tu BiShvat, nor in the Mincha prayer of the eve of the 15th of Shevat, for the greatness of the day already begins the day before. We must begin and continue with joy, smiling widely at our Father in Heaven.

2. Like the tree that gives fruit without getting anything in return, so does the Jew: "You will love your neighbor as yourself" without receiving anything in return, it is a selfless gift. Let's look at how we should give. Let us research and highlight the beautiful fruits of our actions.

3. The Imrei Chaim writes that on the 15th of Shevat we pray for fruits, and "fruits" is an allusion to children. Pray for good children, endowed with love, divine fear, kindness, and compassion...

4. Birkat Shalom explains that the head should be interpreted as the root. The branches grow from the root, but each branch grows according to the root from which it comes: an orange branch will not grow from the root of an apple... Similarly, for man: his Divine Service- the root - is what determines the results. Tu BiShvat is a day where it is desirable to explore the purpose for which the Creator has created us in His world, to meditate, to see if we are on the right track to achieve this goal, and to pray for success in carrying out the purpose for which we were created.

5. A tree does not grow in a day. Initially, it is a small shoot, then it develops more and more. After much work, the fruits begin to grow. The same principle is for man. Observe your small progress, check that the bad inclination does not push you to despair. This takes time.

6. The Chidushei Harim writes that the abundance poured on man on Rosh HaShanah has its source in Tu BiShvat, and these things are indeed present in the mind of every Jew who opens himself to the source of the Torah; it is the day to implore success in learning Torah with joy, understanding, and diligence.

7. Rabbi Tzadok HaKohen, in his book Pri Tzadik, writes that on this day it is possible to reach such a high level that we should eat according to the will of our heavenly Father. It is a time to eat to be satisfied and with the aim of achieving a Tikun (repair).

8. The day that the land of Eretz Yisrael renews itself to produce good crops is a joyful day for the eagerly awaiting Jewish people (Sefer Hatoda). Let's think briefly about what a wonderful and excellent country we have! Let us remember how many sacred Mitzvot depend on the land of Israel, let us rejoice and thank for the wonderful gift offered by our loving Father.

9. As we know, the 4 species symbolize parts of the body, and the Etrog alludes to the heart of the Jew. The Bnei Yissachar wrote an extraordinary prayer to pray on Tu BiShvat to obtain a high-quality Etrog for Sukkot. The heart of the Jew is the center of Emunah (faith in G-d), and it is worth singing and imploring: "Vetaher Libeinu Le'ovdecha Be'emet" "And purify our heart to truly serve you".

10. Tu BiShvat is always close to Shabbat Shira. Let us try to sing the best that we can to get to a high level and thank our Heavenly Father. May we use this special moment to elevate ourselves and to strengthen our relationship with our Creator.

The Torah-Box Team - © Torah-Box

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