Tisha B’Av – Kinnah 31 (A Fire Burns Within Me)

This Kinnah follows the aleph beis א-ב pattern, which signifies mercy רחמים.

Here we contrast the triumphant Exodus from Mitzrayim and our tragic expulsion from Yerushalayim. When we left Mitzrayim we had the fire of love for G-d to receive the Torah at Har Sinai. But as we left the burned and destroyed Yerushalayim into chutz LaAretz, we were a broken people. Jews can reach the greatest heights and sink to the lowest depths.

Historically the Jews, and my Pelta family, were expelled from Spain on this same tragic day of Tisha B’Av in 1492 (Catholic Alahambra Decree March 31, 1992). The Jews who left Spain chose Torah Judaism over money wealth and converting to Christianity. The Sefer HaTodaah writes, that Rabbis allowed them to play music on that day, which is normally forbidden. This was to signify that there is never sadness when we leave a country in exile. We only weep, when we are leave Eretz Yisrael, G-d forbid.

Here we compare and contrast not on where we are going, but rather, where we come from. We departed from Mitzrayim; rather than our arrival in Eretz Yisrael. Similar, we departed from Yerushalayim but we not discuss our arrival in galus.

This Kinnah teaches us a bit about Jewish history and destiny.

אז ישיר משה, שיר לא ינשה, בצאתי ממצרים.

ויקונן ירמיה, ונהה נהי נהיה, בצאתי מירושלים.

Then Moshe chose to sing, a song not to be forgotten, when I went out from Mitzrayim.

But lament, did Yirmiyahu, he lamented a lament has come to be, when I went out of Mitzrayim.

Both Moshe and Yirmiyahu used the word “Eicha” in reference to the Jewish people.

דברים א: יב, פרשת דברים

[משה] אֵיכָה אֶשָּׂא לְבַדִּי, טָרְחֲכֶם וּמַשַּׂאֲכֶם וְרִיבְכֶם.

How can I ]Moshe] alone carry, your contentiousness your burdens and your quarrels? (Devarim 1:12)

Coming out of Egypt, the Jewish Nation experienced rapid material a spiritual growth. Moshe could not handle the Jews because of their growth and success; so he expressed the word איכה “How” can I lead you?

מגילת איכה א:א

[ירמיהו] איכה ישבה בדד העיר רבתי עם היתה כאלמנה, רבתי בגוים שרתי במדינות היתה למס:

[Yirmiyahu] How is it that she sits in solitude, the city that had so many people, she has become like a widow, the greatest among nations, the princess among states, has become a tribute payer. (Eicha 1:1)

Yirmiyahu used the word איכה “How”, to comment on the failure of the Jews do to Teshuvah. They were overwhelmed and the whole nation fell apart.

“Eicha” represents, that in the Jewish world, our lives can change in a moment. It’s not logical. At one moment in time were slaves, and then we became an exalted nation, when we left Egypt. The Jews had secure borders with a Beis HaMikdash and then we were in a state of total destruction.

When we focus and where we came from, we can see how quickly we go from slavery to freedom עבדות לחרות, and also from having a Yerushalayim and then a destruction חורבן. The Nation of Israel עם ישראל, has enormous potential. However, as a nation we are currently at a spiritual low point.

We have hope. Despite our spiritual and physical destruction, we are reminded how quickly things can change. Look how the fear of the COVID-19 pandemic of 2020 has changed the entire world! We don’t know when, how, or where things may change. This teaches us that in the blink of an eye בהרף עין , we can have a ישועה with rebuilding the Beis Hamikdash and the coming of Moshiach.

The Imrei Emes points out that Tisha B’Av night always falls out on the same day of the week that we celebrated our Pesach Seder (first day of Pesach). This is another reminder of “How” איכה we can quickly go from exile to redemption. For this reason the pattern of the Kinnah starts with letter א to ת. This represents that G-d can choose, for our sake, to change from strict judgment דין to mercy רחמים .


When I went out From Yerushalayim – בצאתי מירושלים

How did the city of Yerushalayim get its name? Shem the son of Noach called it “complete” שלם. Whereas, after Avraham performed the Akeidas Yitzchak, at that location, he named the city “the awe of G-d” ה’ יראה. G-d Himself combined the two names and then called the city Yerushalayim ירושלים (the name “Jerusalem” is an obvious error of pronunciation).

The Vilna Gaon explains, that after Avraham’s tenth and final test, he was able to recognize G-d’s dominion over the world. There are seven Heavens between our world and G-d. At Akeidas Yitzchak, Avraham was able to bring Hashem one Heaven closer to us; this is “awe” or יראה – “seeing” G-d.

Yerushalayim is the physical location where Hashem spiritually relates to mankind. Here is where we had the Beis Hamikdash and Hashem communicated with us on a daily basis. This relationship with G-d still exits, to a much lesser extent. Instead of karbanos, we now have teshuva and tefilla , which are the tools that restore our individual relationships with G-d.

The Zohar explains that Yerushalayim is the “heart” of the entire world. We get close to G-d through our prayers תפילה. Evil and the יצר הרע must exist someplace, even today. Talmud Yoma (59b) teaches us, that when the Rabbis removed the desire for Avodah Zarah from the world, it left from the Holy of Holies of the Beis HaMikdash, in Yerushalayim. It is no wonder that the Moslems and Christians want to steal Yerushalayim away from us. Thank G-d, we are back in Eretz Yisrael and rebuilding Yerushalayim and the population is growing. We are here to stay and we will never leave.

Despite all of our sins עבירות , we can renew our relationship with G-d. The best place to do this in living and performing His Mitzvos in Eretz Yisrael. Even better is to pray to G-d in Yerushalayim.

ששון ושמחה, ונס יגון ואנחה, בשובי לירושלים!

Joy and gladness, and fleeing of sadness and sighing – When I return to Yerushalayim!

About the Author
Arie E. Pelta, M.D., a Board Certified General and Colorectal Surgeon from the USA , made aliyah with his wife and 7 children in 2013. He is also a active Medical Corps Officer holding the rank of Captain in the IDF Reserves. Currently practicing in Laniado Hospital in Netanya; speciaizing in the surgical care of all problems of the colon, rectum and anus.
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