23 May 2020

The Healing Rains

Layil Shabbat I smelled rain, but because it was already dark I could not find where it fell. My sensitive smeller knows when the rain clouds open up overhead.
I will make these and the environs of My hill a blessing: I will send down the rain in its season, rains that bring blessing. Ezekiel 34:26
Jewish tradition (Mishnah: Ta’anis 12b) teaches that rains that fall at the end of the month of Nissan after Passover are considered to be a bad sign for the world and are, in fact, a curse.

But rains that fall in the next month, Iyar, do not follow this rule. Rabbi Avraham Yehoshua Heshel, an 18th Century Hasidic leader from Apt in Russia, certainly felt so, teaching that rains in the month of Iyar had a ‘segula’ (benevolent influence).

“Rain that falls in the month of Iyar bring great healing to the world for every ill that has no cure anywhere,” Rabbi Heshel wrote in his book Oheiv Yisrael. Rabbi Pinchas Shapiro of Koretz, a Polish-Lithuanian Hasidic leader who was a contemporary of Rabbi Heshel, taught that the benevolent influence of Iyar rain could be accessed by standing bareheaded outside in the rain. He also recommended opening the mouth and drinking the rainwater.

Though rain out of season may not be desirable, the Yerushalmi Talmud (Taanit parek aleph, halacha chet) teaches that as long as there was enough rain during the winter, rains after Pesach are an additional blessing. This double-dose of rain is hinted at by the Prophet Jeremiah.
They have not said to themselves, “Let us revere Hashem our God, Who gives the rain, The early and late rain in season, Who keeps for our benefit The weeks appointed for harvest.”Jeremiah 5:24

Source: breakingnews

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