Are you ready for some... Shmittah? (AUDIO)
One of the most special things that comes along with living in the Land of Israel is the privilege of being able to keep many Mitzvot that are simply not relevant to the Jew of the Exile.
Many of these Mitzvot are known as Mitzvot HaTluyot Ba'Aretz - Torah commandments that are incumbent upon a Jew living in the Land of Israel.
This coming year, 5768, will be a Shmittah year - the one year, out of every seven, when the Jew in Israel must allow the Land of Israel to lay fallow, (it's actually much more complex that that, but we'll get to that a little later on) and more importantly, being that I made Aliyah only four years ago, this will represent my very first opportunity to fulfill the Mitzva of Shmittah.
Shmittah has additional significance, as being one of the Mitzvot that only becomes Biblically mandated once the majority of the Jewish People are living in the Land of Israel - something that has not happened since the destruction of the first Temple 2,500+ years ago, and which is scheduled to happen at some point in the next 25 years.
In preparation for the upcoming Shmittah year, I helped to organize a weekly, English language, Shmittah shiur in my community. The shiur is scheduled to run from now until the start of the Shmittah year, and I will be posting each installment of the shiur, along with the accompanying source sheets.
The first, weekly English Shmittah Shiur can be listened to by clicking here. (MP3 format)
The shiur is being given by Rabbi Gedalia Meyer of Ma'aleh Adumim, and he welcomes any questions that listeners might have (firstname.lastname@example.org) .