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15

Rama writes, when discussing how to spell the various Hebrew months in a Get (Shulchan Aruch EH 126:7): אייר, בשני יודי"ן; ואם כתב בחד יו"ד, פסול, אם לא בשעת הדחק. ויש נמנעין ליתן גט באייר, אך במקום הדחק נותנין וכותבין בב' יודי"ן.‏ Iyar is spelled with two Yuds. If one wrote it with one Yud, it is invalid except in pressing circumstances. Some ...


13

This practice is also brought down by Simla Chadasha (11:10); see the מטה אשר there (12) who brings from the פלתי that this practice is from ר' יהודה החסיד and was only a concern then, because in his time there were many who practiced כישוף (magic) on geese, but is now no longer a concern. אין להקפיד ע"ז, כי אז בימי ר"י החסיד היה הזמן גורם, כי רבו אז ...


13

The Babylonian calendar wasn't adopted exactly as it was, but the names of the months were. This was recognized by the Sages in the Gemara, Yerushalmi Rosh Hashana 1:2. Why the Jews adopted these Babylonian names is a good question. In fact, it seems like the Jews did have their own ancient names for the months, such as 'Ziv' and 'Bul', which are mentioned ...


10

Midrash Abba Gurion to Ester (ed. Buber 3:7), which was redacted in the tenth century, refers to it as חשוון (Heshvan): לתשרי זכות הרגלים, לחשוון זכות שרה It is also found in Eisenbach's edition of the Rokeah's Sefer HaShem (page 133) from the late 12th-early 13th century: ראש השנה א', חשון ב', כסליו א' It is also found in Goldschmidt's edition of ...


9

The gemara in Megillah 6b-7a explains why when it investigates the Mishnaic statement that in a leap year, one is required to read the megillah in the second Adar to be yotzei the requirement. (as per dafyomi.co.il) R. Eliezer says, every year we celebrate in the month next to Shevat. R. Shimon says, every year we celebrate in the month adjacent to Nisan. ...


8

I forget who told me this, but I heard that Tomer Devorah is traditionally studied in the month of Elul. I've been told that the Bobover Rebbe told his chassidim to learn Tomer Devorah this year, and that Rav Moshe Wolfson told his Kehilla the same a few years back. This practice makes sense, because the first chapter of Tomer Devorah is about Hashem's 13 ...


8

Just searching around in Torat Emet finds a few mentions of different months, in Tanach, besides for Adar: Nissan Esther 3:7 Nechemiah 2:1 Sivan Esther 8:9 Tammuz Yechezkel 8:14 (kidding) Elul Nechemiah 6:15 Kislev Nechemiah 1:1 Zechariah 7:1 Teves Esther 2:16 Shevat Zechariah 1:7 NB: This list may be incomplete.


7

The extra Adar happens when there is a leap year -- we add a month to preserve the lunar properties of the calendar. Seven in nineteen years are leap years, so every 2-3 years on average. From Judaism 101: Adar I is added in the 3rd, 6th, 8th, 11th, 14th, 17th and 19th years of the cycle. (Technically it is Adar I (aka Adar Alef) that's the additional ...


7

I've heard that after the sin of the Golden Calf, the Clouds of Glory were taken away. After Yom Kippur, Moshe told the Jews to start donating for the Mishkan. On Sukkos, all the necessary materials were obtained, and the Clouds of Glory returned.


7

Shulchan Aruch HaRav writes (O.C. 429): חכמים הראשונים תקנו בזמן שבית המקדש היה קיים שיתחילו הדרשנים לדרוש ברבים הלכות הרגל שלשים יום לפני הרגל דהיינו ... ומי"ד באלול ואילך ידרשו הלכות החג ... ותקנה זו לא נתבטלה מישראל אף לאחר שחרב בית המקדש ... והעיקר לדרוש ולהורות להם דרכי ה' וללמד להם המעשה אשר יעשון ולא כמו שנוהגין עכשיו ובדורות הללו שאין החכם שונה ...


7

I know many Yeshivas where the Rosh Yeshiva interrupts his regularly scheduled programming of a vaad or whatever public mussar seder he has to go through Shaarei Teshuva of Rabbeinu Yona during Elul. I know the Rosh Yeshiva of Passaic (R' Meir Stern) used to do this for his machshava chabura, but I don't know if he still does. In Ner Israel, the Rosh ...


7

Rabbi Yosef Ber Soleveitchik would teach Likkutei Torah from the Ba'al HaTanya during Elul in preparation for Rosh Hashana. The relevant Ma'amarim start in Parshas Reih and continue from there. I haven't been able to find someone who reports specifically what from there he would learn with his students.


7

Dinonline has an extensive essay on this issue. In short, the Tzitz Eliezer and Yabia Omer allow the writing of the secular date, but mention that the Jewish date is preferred when possible. They do have different ideas on how to write it out (see article for details). The Maharam Schik, on the other hand, was against such a practice (I remember learning ...


6

Tammuz originated as a Sumerian shepherd god. In Babylonia, the month Tammuz was established in honor of the eponymous god Tammuz, who originated as a Sumerian shepherd-god, The idolatrous ritual of mourning corresponded with the changing of the seasons. the Babylonians marked the decline in daylight hours and the onset of killing summer heat and drought ...


6

See Chasam Sofer on Shabbos 147b, http://www.hebrewbooks.org/pdfpager.aspx?req=21655&st=&pgnum=80. That the names of the months come from the Babylonians, so what? The name Amraphel comes from Babylonian or some similar language, but it is darshened as having a Hebrew meaning. Same with Sancheriv and lots of other examples.


5

Nissan starts without Tachnun because it is the time when the Mishkan was inaugurated - that is the first 12 days. Then the 13th is the Isru Chag of those 12 days (The Tzemach Tzedek quoting the Maharil), and then there is no Tachnun on the 14th because the Korban Pesach was brought, and then Pesach. So there is no opportunity to say Tachanun until the ...


5

The Jewish calendar actually has more than one "new year", depending on what you're counting. 1 Nissan is the new year for months; when the torah says "in the seventh month" (or some other numeric counting) it's counting from this. Nissan is the month of our redemption from Egypt, a defining moment in our history. The torah explicitly refers to the month ...


4

Rambam Le'am (Mosad Harav Kook, 5717) to Hilchos Kidush Hachodesh 8:6 explains that we want to make all required adjustments at the first possible opportunity in the year. We do not want to do anything to affect Tishrei because of all the Yomim Tovim in that month, and so the next possible months which we can change are Cheshvan and Kislev. (See also "Na'veh ...


4

One year in high school, my rebbi taught our class Hilchos Teshuva from the Rambam during the month of Elul.


4

Check out my hebcal-js library, the perfect thing you need for this. Include it, and then you can use one of the following snippets: This is only if you will never have dates in Elul (due to a bug): var hebDate = new Hebcal.HDate(new Date(2014, 11 /* meaning 12 */, 8)); hebDate.setMonth(hebDate.getMonth() + 1); var gregDate = hebDate.greg(); // a ...


4

The names of the months came up with them from Bavel. Talmud Yerushalmi Rosh Hashana perek one, halacha two. This Yerushalmi is mentioned in Tosafos Rosh Hashana 7a, d.h. Midivrei. Most of the names are mentioned in megilas Esther and Nechemia. We can estimate then, at least to the latest possible date, based on Achashveirosh's reign. Wiki states ...


4

Such a kabbalistic idea is discussed by R. Josef Gikatilla in his Shaare Orah (Gate 5). An English trans. of the above is found in 'Gates of Light' (232ff.) by Avi Weinstein.


4

ירח has its name based on the rotation it follows, that the moon's light it renewed from each rotation to the next (מירח לירח). Therefore it says (Tehilim 104:19), He made the moon (ירח) to mark the seasons, saying the God established the time-cycle of the moon to the days of the month (חדש) so that mankind will have a signal to establish its correct time-...


4

I don't know what the Likkutei Shas of the Arizal says, but as per the second clause of your question asking if there are any other reasons for a connection, there is a famous piece in the fifth chapter of Sefer Yetzira which goes through the alef beis. It writes somewhat cryptically: המליך אות ס' בשינה וקשר לו כתר וצרפן זה בזה וצר בהם קשת בעולם וכסלו בשנה ...


3

I am assuming that your question refers to the current "fixed" calendar, so it seems that you have numerous answers on that. I wanted to add that historically, this was not always the situation during the time that the Sanhedrin existed and prior to that. I just completed a class on the history and the workings of the Judaic calendar, which you will find ...


3

There’s a Rabbi Frand tape on it. It appears that in the Chasam Sofer’s world, the standard Jewish custom had been to write only the Hebrew date on a tombstone, and then some progressives wanted to include the Gregorian date — he railed against that change. But that was that particular application. Apparently there are documents and letters from the Chasam ...


3

Yalkut Shimoni, Melakhim I, 184: א"ר חנינא בכ"ה בכסליו נגמר מלאכת המשכן ועשה מקופל עד אחד בניסן, כמו שכתוב ביום החדש הראשון באחד לחדש תקים את משכן, והיו ישראל ממלמלין על משה לומר למה לא הוקם מיד שמא דופי אירע בו והקב"ה חשב לערב שמחת המשכן בחדש שנולד בו יצחק דכתיב לושי ועשי עוגות ואמרו לו שוב אשוב אליך, ומעתה הפסיד כסלו שנגמרה בו המלאכה אמר הקב"ה ...


2

To add to what has already been said, I once heard a deeper reason behind the psak of not giving a get in Iyar. One of the themes of Iyar is "Second Chances" - such as - Pesach Sheini second chance for korban Pesach Lag BaOmer second chance for Torah, it was on that day Rabbi Akiva decided after all his talmidim died, to start again with five new students ...


2

Chovos HaLevovos – Rabbeinu Bachya ibn Paquda (Early 11th Century). Arguably the most important mussar work of all time, the Chovos HaLevovos is divided into ten Shearim (“Gates”). For Ellul perhapes Shaar HaTeshuva (“Gate of Repentance”) – on repentance. Shaar Cheshbon HaNefesh (“Gate of Self-Accounting”) – on the importance of introspection and self-...


2

I am learning Nesiv HaTeshuva, by the Maharal. Nesivos Olam is the Maharal's "mussar sefer" according to his introduction, and Nesiv HaTeshuva is the section about teshuva. It talks about the nature of Teshuva, and is therefore helpful in appreciating the significance of Teshuva.


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