Lag BaOmer

Lag BaOmer means “Thirty Three In The Sheaf”, a reference to the sheaf of wheat which is associated with the period between Pesach and Shvuot in Jewish tradition. This period is supposed to consist of seven times seven weeks, or 49 days in all, and Lag BaOmer is the 33rd day in this sequence. It is the one day during the period of the Omer when weddings and other joyous festivities are permitted to be celebrated. The period of the Omer was traditionally viewed as a time of tension and anxiety, originally because of concern about the growth of the spring crop. Shvuot, the “Festival of Weeks”, was also known as the “Festival of First Fruits”, and the harvest of the first fruits of the spring crop at this time was seen as symbolically bringing the Omer period of anxiety to an end. However, there is no mention of Lag BaOmer in Tanach, and it does not appear that this holiday was celebrated in ancient times. It is first mentioned in the Talmud, in connection with certain stories about rabbi Akiva.
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