Each summer, usually in July, there’s a period called “The Three Weeks” observed as a time of semi-mourning between the fast-days of the 17th of Tammuz and Tisha B’Av. For those observant of these traditions, there are no weddings, concerts and haircuts during this time period. Aside for the Halachic restrictions, the Rebbe encouraged that this be a time for personal reflection and spiritual growth, increasing in our love for our fellow (the opposite of which is said to be a cause of the Temple’s destruction) and of study and yearning for Jerusalem and the Temple.
Here’s a collection of online resources to explore, ranging from law & custom, to historical significance and personal relevance, from past Temples to the future redemption, and much in between.
Chabad.org’s mini-site on The Three Weeks There’s lots of info, and there are many further linked articles to explore.
Rebbe on the Lost Ark, a commentary on Maimonides. This is one of my favorite talks of the Rebbe about the Temple. It doesn’t say it there in the text, but this dual-perspective is also a way how the Rebbe encouraged us to view every Jew.
“Celebrating Destruction” see this “Mendel’s Messages” post on our site, fitting for these Three Weeks remembering the Beit HaMikdash.
“My Favorite Eicha Verses” also on “Mendel’s Messages”. Eicha is Jeremiah’s Lamentations, usually not a favorite text. This sad Megillah is read on Tisha B’Av. But there are some positive sparks in between all that sadness, see which verses I (Mendel) like best!
See this “Celebration Magazine” Special Edition (made by Chabad of Wisconsin) It’s a downloadable PDF, link may be temporary. I didn’t read the whole thing, but there are some nice stories and pieces there.
Rebbe on Rabbi Akiva’s Laughter.See Section 8 on that page. The Rebbe’s lengthy talk on this in 1964 was a pivotal transformation point in my father’s (Rabbi Israel Rubin) unique approach to Torah study. It is also something Raizy and I studied together for several weekends on our trips up to the Catskills in the first summer of our marriage. I can’t find the rich and lengthy talk online in English (yet) but there is a snippet of it in this “Giving of the Torah” commentary – see Section 8.
Sefira/3 Weeks Music – Jewish law says no concerts during these 3 Weeks, but many families include recorded music in that as well. One way to deal with that is with Sefirah (another period of semi-mourning after Passover) Music, i.e. acapella music, vocals only with no instruments. This link has a 100+ Jewish acapella music videos.
Hope to add to this list soon. May you have a meaningful Three Weeks, and “may these days be transformed into days of joys and happiness!”
May you have a meaningful Three Weeks, and “may these days be transformed into days of joys and happiness!”