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    Nisan – one of the busiest months

    nisanThe two busiest months of the year are Nisan and Tishri. Tishri actually has more festivals, but Nisan has a unique multiplicity of activities, domestic, liturgical, social and intellectual.

    The demands that Pesach makes on us are almost unbelievable, and yet it is the one festival that almost every Jew on earth observes, at least to some extent.

    Samson Raphael Hirsch explains why the other name for Nisan is Aviv, “The Month of Spring”. In springtime the earth is a season of hope. As Shir HaShirim puts it (2:11-12), “The winter is past, the rain is over and gone; the flowers appear on the earth, the time of singing is come”.

    In history this is symbolic of the people of Israel on the very first Pesach, when the gloom of night gave way to dawn and the people were about to experience national rebirth.

    Hirsch adds that this should also be a source of comfort to the individual when “the bitter hours of trial in your own life… bring you near to God as your Guardian and Shepherd”.

    Those who live in the Southern Hemisphere with a different springtime can still learn the same lesson.

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