The Jerusalem Post
Conference on social unity and tolerance to be held in Modi’in on Tisha Be’av
Medics to be on hand at Western Wall in anticipation of thousands of worshipers visiting during the fast day
The PANIM For Jewish Renaissance organization is scheduled hold a conference dedicated to the concept of social unity in Israel on Tisha Be’av, which falls this year on Monday night and Tuesday.
The organizers said that the principle has taken on increased significance at present due to the hostilities between the State of Israel and the Hamas regime in Gaza, and the purpose of the event will be to promote the importance of tolerance within Israel, and the unity between the different sectors of the population.
Among those speaking at the conference, to be held in Modi’in on Tuesday afternoon, will be Racheli Fraenkel, the mother of slain teenager Naftali Fraenkel, MK Elazar Stern, rabbi and former Shas MK Haim Amsalem, and Modi’in Mayor Haim Bibas.
Tisha Be’av is the second-important fast in the Jewish calendar and commemorates the destruction of the First Temple and the Second Temple.
“On Tisha Be’av, when we remember the consequences of baseless hatred, it is appropriate to go back and learn from the past about the importance of moderation and tolerance for the other and his opinions,” said PANIM director Yaron Kanner.
The fast begins at 19:38 on Monday night and ends at 20:02 on Tuesday night.
Every Tisha Be’av, Magen David Adom personnel are alerted to treat people who are fasting and become dehydrated.
The nearly 25-hour long fast is considered one of the most difficult fasts on the Jewish calendar because it falls at the height of the summer heat.
The Chief Rabbinate has stated that combat soldiers on duty should not fast on Tisha Be’av.
MDA and United Hatzalah medics will be on duty around the country. Many will be on hand at Jerusalem’s Western Wall, where tens of thousands are scheduled to come to pray.
It is important to eat a suitable meal before beginning the fast and to drink cool water all day on Monday to prepare for the fast so as not to dehydrate.
MDA recommends drinking at least two liters of water and avoiding sweet beverages or anything containing caffeine. In addition, do not eat very salty foods before the fast, as they cause liquids to be absorbed.
The pre-fast meal should include complex carbohydrates such as whole grains, plus protein such as eggs and vegetables, which give a feeling of satiety for much longer than other foods.
The elderly, pregnant women and chronically ill should consult their doctors before the fast to determine if they can fast safely. Patients with heart disease, cancer, epilepsy, high blood pressure, thyroid disease, diabetes and kidney disease should not stop taking their medications, MDA said.
The first signs of dehydration are headache and fuzzy vision; at later stages, they include the production of a minimum of urine. Those who fast should spend as much time as possible in shaded, cool areas.
Pay special attention to children and the elderly in the heat; if old people fast alone, keep in telephone contact with them. If there is a suspicion of dehydration, call MDA at 101.
After the end of the fast, one should eat two slices of bread and white cheese or a piece of cake. An hour later, one can safely eat a light meal, according to MDA.