"Why fast over the Temple if I don't even believe in it? Why pray that a new Temple be built? I'm not religious, I don't want a Temple; I certainly don't want animal sacrifices.” Something that happened centuries ago.
A secular person has no point at which to connect with Tisha B'Av? arutzsheva
"Time is not a series of accidents. The occurrence of a particular event on a specific date is more than coincidence, particularly when that event affects the Jewish People.
"Our Sages declare: “Meritorious acts are brought about on days of merit and unfavorable actions on blameworthy days.” If a miracle or calamity takes place on a specific day, the event reveals something about the nature of the day itself.
"As an extension to this idea, the Sages of the Kabballa explain that each holiday or fast is not only a recollection of past history. G–D has created the universe with a set pattern of spiritual influences which are expressed at their appropriate time each year. When the holiday is clcebrated, the events commemorated recur on the spiritual plane.
"Understood within this context, the series of tragedies that have occurred on Tisha B’Av may be seen as connected by a common theme. Just as the 15th of Nissan, the date of the exodus from Egypt, is eternally fixed as the season of our freedom, and the 10th of Tishrei, the day G–D forgave the sin of the golden calf, became the day of atonement forever, Tisha B’Av is a day of potential tragedy each year.
"Throughout Jewish law and lore, our Sages and spiritual leaders have noted the significance of this day. Maimonides, in his text, Mishnah Torah, enumerates the fast days observed by the Jewish People and the tragedies that they commemorate. He calls Tisha B’Av "a day designated for retribution.” The passage quoted below provides us a perspective from which to view the observance of ALL COMMUNAL FASTS and, in particular, an insight into the tragic story of Tisha B’v.
"In his description of the fast days ordained by the Sages, Maimonides writes:
"There are times during which all of Israel fasts because of the tribulation which occurred on them. [These fasts were instituted] to awaken our hearts and open the paths of Yeshiva for us, causing us to acknowledge our evil deeds and those of our ancestors which resemble our own deeds and brought about these tribulations, affecting our ancestors and ourselves. In remembering these matters, we will return to doing good, as it is written (Leviticus 26:40), “and they shall confess their sins and the sins of their ancestors.”
From the Book of Eicha, Introduction to Tisha B’Av [MeAm Lo’ez by Rabbi Shmuel Yerushalmi; Maznaim Pub. NY]