For more than 2000 years the Jewish Nation has been mourning the destruction of the Holy Temple. The loss of the Temple is remembered at all festive occasions. At wedding ceremonies the groom breaks the symbolic glass. Ashes of mourning are placed upon the forehead of the groom and a square meter of a new home is left unpainted or unfinished, all in remembrance of the destruction of the Temple.
Why do we still cry and mourn after 2000 years? Why can’t we just move on with life?
An incident that took place many years ago will help us get a better understanding of the mourning that takes place on the 9th of Av.
Napoleon was walking along a street when he stopped in front of a synagogue. He heard crying from within. “What are those Jews doing?” he asked the soldier at his side. “They are mourning over the destruction of their Temple.”
“When did that happen?”
“Around 2000 years ago.”
“They are still crying after 2000 years? A nation that mourns so long will never cease. They will surely return to their land and see the rebuilding of their Temple.”
Napoleon realized that the Jewish People have a rich past, they are a nation built upon steady foundations that date all the way back to Abraham. A nation that is so deeply connected to its past thousands of years later, has a blissful and joyus future to look forward to.
The Jews are still crying after 2000 years because they realize the significance of the loss of the Temple. We cry anticipating the rebuilding of the Third Temple and the ingathering of the exiles.
May we merit this year to see the coming of the Messiah and celebrate Tisha B'Av as a Festival speedily in our days.