The first day of Rosh Chodesh for Tammuz begins July 3 with the second day observed July 4. Tammuz always has two days of Rosh Chodesh. Of course, July 4 is Independence Day, celebrated with family fun, picnics, food and fireworks. By contrast, this Hebrew month is void of holidays and marks a time of mourning, beginning with the fast on the 17th of Tammuz.
For three weeks following, until the 9th of Av, no marriages are performed, and activities that might be celebrated as “firsts” are not experienced. We remember the destruction of the first and second holy temples in Jerusalem. It was the time of the golden calf, when Moses returned after being away for 40 days, only to find his people believing he would not return and so decided to build an idol to worship. The notion is that just because they couldn’t see Hashem at work, they gave up faith, and gave in to lower vibrations in thoughts and actions. Moses, ignited by the fiery combination of blazing temperatures and the internal heat of his anger, broke the tablets.
The month’s task is reining in our own fiery emotions that can ignite people and situations. Uncontrolled anger and passion require restraint.
I’m currently embroiled in a situation that highlights Tammuz energy. Briefly, we made a change to our yard that one neighbor, in particular, doesn’t like. We have no homeowner’s association and have lived here for 23 years without incident.
Instead of approaching us, he sought out four families whom he believed would be like-minded. He set about sparking and fanning their anger. The image of angry villagers in the street with lit torches comes to mind.
There was vandalism of a garden chair, resulting in a police report, and action to install cameras and sensor lights. Then there was a verbal assault, during which this one man screamed in my face at the edge of our yard, his eyes and neck veins bulging out of his red, angry face. This unacceptable behavior is the energy of Tammuz.
We listened to them, but we weren’t heard. The choice of mulch in question does not breach city ordinances or laws. They just don’t like it. Although not required, we’ll make some alterations, without using materials that have been chemically sprayed or painted with toxic chemicals. But they don’t care about health issues, only that the lawn looks a way that pleases them.
Peace needs to be restored in our yard and in our world. But the ultimate dilemma for all of us is, how do we keep the haters and bullies from running the show?
I’m literally holding the vision of peace, living and breathing into an immediate future that restores calm for all, while fiercely hanging on to my belief that Hashem is at work in this, even if I don’t know what Hashem has in store as a peaceful resolution. Sometimes all we can do is have faith and pray.
Each zodiac sign is ruled by a planet, with the Sun ruling Cancer, and the Moon ruling Leo next month during Av. Tammuz is a month of contrast in which the extreme light of the sun must illuminate the darkness. The planet Mercury goes retrograde on July 8 until Aug. 1, which brings about the experience of Murphy’s law. There is an expected breakdown of communication (not looking forward to that at this time) and appliances.
This is combined with the twice-yearly eclipse season. The next solar eclipse is July 2 and is the first one since the Great American Eclipse of 2017. The areas that will see it include the Pacific Ocean and most of South America. Eclipses bring up issues that are hidden and then revealed. They require us to face our truths.
The Cancer moon also represents the Shekinah, divine feminine energies of intuition, feelings, care of self/others and love. It’s the yin to the yang.
Meditation Focus: Consider a fiery area of your life that needs calming. If it’s not readily apparent, see if there’s one you’ve been avoiding. Flood it with peace and observe how Hashem appears.