The Jewish Chronicle - - Judaism -

Rabbi Ju­lian Sin­clair on the paths to prac­tice

THE Omer is the 49-day pe­riod of count­ing from Pe­sach to Shavuot. Since the rab­binic pe­riod, the Omer has be­come a semi-sad sea­son. At least un­til the 33rd day, the ha­lachah is that we do not get mar­ried (or have hair­cuts, or lis­ten to live mu­sic). This is in re­mem­brance of the stu­dents of Rabbi Akiva who died from a plague dur­ing this time be­cause, the Tal­mud teaches, they did not treat one an­other with re­spect.

There were times sec­ond mar­riages were al­lowed to take place dur­ing the Omer, on the grounds that they were not as joy­ful as first­time wed­dings. But to­day we do not dis­tin­guish: who is to say that a re­mar­riage is any less of a cel­e­bra­tion? How­ever, ac­cord­ing to the Mish­nah Beru­rah, re­mar­ry­ing a spouse from whom you were pre­vi­ously di­vorced is al­lowed dur­ing the Omer.

One may get en­gaged dur­ing the Omer. You never know what may hap­pen if you de­lay the decision and com­mit­ment to marry.

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