Friday, May 24, 2013

The First Fruits

By Moshe Feiglin

Last Thursday, I practiced bringing the first fruits (bikurim) to the Beit Hamikdash.

Rabbi Baruch Kahane, who is a Kohen, wore the Kohen's garments that were woven at the Temple Institute, stood next to the replica of the altar and received from me - "the representative of the kingdom" the silver tray holding the Seven Species. It was all done facing the site of the Holy Temple. When I recited the relevant verses, I felt joy.

There were a few "crazy" people there - I had the privilege to be one of them. More important, there were a lot of children there. Those children will grow up with this authentic experience. They will know what they are missing as long as the Temple is not rebuilt.

The custom of bringing the first fruits was naturally celebrated by the kibbutz movement in its first years. Those pioneers, who strove to renew Hebrew culture, could not skip over this mitzvah, that gives power and meaning to the Hebrew connection to the Land of Israel.

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