Tuesday, May 18, 2010
The next two days, starting at sundown tonight will be the holiday of Shavuos (or Shavuot if you like), commemorating the giving of the Torah on Mt. Sinai. One custom involves staying up the whole first night (tonight) reading something called Tikkun Leil Shavuos, which contains selections from the various parts of the Torah--something from every parshah, something from every tractate of the Mishnah, the Book of Ruth, some mysticism, etc. The idea is that the Jewish people fell asleep the first time, but we can make up for it every year by staying up since a holiday is a spiritual repeat of the original event. Sometimes I make it all the way through without falling asleep, sometimes I don't.
We also eat dairy foods for the festive meal of the first day, such as the blintzes and sour cream pictured above. There are numerous explanations for this practice, but it is worth noting that blintzes and cheesecake taste good. More info here and not just about blintzes. See you Thursday night (or Friday). Chag Sameach!