The Torah commands us to count the days from Pesach to Shavuos in order to connect the Exodus on Pesach with the Giving of the Torah on Shavuos. The days of S’firas HaOmer are a time to rectify character attributes. Rav Moshe Feinstein explains that the name Shavuos, literally Weeks, so beautifully conveys this idea, since the holiday of Shavuos is an outcome of the weeks that precede it. For this very reason, the date of the holiday of Shavuos is determined by the 49 days of S’firas HaOmer, and not the date, because the 49 days prior, which are used to prepare, are essential to the holiday, and are required in full (see Shem MiShmuel, BaMidbar 5675).

In Pirkei Avos (Ethics of the Fathers) 6:6, our Sages teach us that there are 48 attributes that we must perfect in order to acquire the Torah. As a prelude to Shavuos, the days of the Omer are designed for us to acquire these attributes and reach new spiritual heights.

In Pirkei Avos, we learn that the Torah is acquired through 48 qualities, which are: study, attentive listening, saying one’s studies aloud, intuitive understanding, discernment, awe of teachers, fear of Heaven, humility, joy, purity, serving the wise, being close with fellow students, evaluative discussion with fellow students, calmness, knowledge of Tanach, knowledge of Mishnah, moderation in business activity, moderation in worldly activity, moderation in physical pleasure, moderation in sleep, moderation in speech, moderation in merry-making, slowness to anger, having a good heart, faith in the Sages, accepting suffering, knowing one’s place, being happy with whatever one has, making a fence around one’s words, not boasting, endearing oneself to others, loving G-d, loving His creatures, loving righteousness, loving justice, loving to have one’s mistakes corrected, keeping far from honor, not being arrogant about one’s knowledge, not enjoying making halachic decisions, sharing another person’s troubles, judging others positively, setting them in the path of truth, setting them in the path of peace, teaching calmly, asking and answering, listening and adding insights, studying in order to teach, studying in order to do the mitzvos, making one’s teacher wiser, reflecting over one’s lessons, and repeating an idea in the name of the person who said it first. For we learned that whoever repeats an idea in the name of the originator brings redemption to the world – as it says in the Megillah, “And Esther told it to the King in Mordechai’s name” (Esther 2:22).

Our sages teach us that the 49 days of S’firah parallel the 48 qualities that must be developed in order to acquire the Torah. The first 48 days of the S’firah should be used for working on each of those qualities, and the 49th is a day to complete the process. When we reach the end of S’firas HaOmer, we should be energized by the messages of this period of the year and by the new spiritual heights that we obtained. If we really use the S’firah period properly, then we truly will be ready to receive the Torah on Shavuos.

List of People Who Need
a R’fuah Sh’leimah

(a complete recovery)

Please recite Psalms 20, 30, 88, 121, and 130.

Boris Baruch ben Frecha Frida

Alter Shmuel ben Chavah Leah

Chaim Avraham ben Shifrah Zisel

Chaim ben Malkah

Yehudah Yudel ben Miriam Gittel

Rav Shmuel Zalman ben Chanah

Gavriel Gabby ben Stella Sarah

Moshe ben Shoshanah

Yehudah Avraham ben Sarah

David Yosef Elimelech ben Elisheva Hinda

Yisachar David ben Chayah

Ariel Shmuel ben Leah

Yitzchak ben Miriam

Matisyahu Yeshayahu ben Chanah Chinka

Avraham Alan ben Leah Angela

Rabbi Aharon David ben Tzivia Leah Chadash

Shlomo ben Mazal

Chaim ben Pesha Miriam

Shmaryahu Yosef Chaim ben Pesha Miriam

Baruch Avraham ben Helen

Shimon ben Sarah

Yosef Ala ben Samara

Chaim Yehoshua Aryeh Leib ben Masha


Tova Yocheved bas Esther Bukas

Chayah Shoshanah Tovah bas Esther

Ruchamah Perel Malkah Leah bas Chanah Serel

Malkah bat Allegre

Gittel bas Sarah

Esther Hadassah bas Devorah

Chayah Malkah bas Charlotte

Rachel bas Miriam

Olga Chayah bas Gilah

Chayah Rivkah bas Yocheved

Sarah bas Ilanah

Nelly Nekdam bas Mafrat

Limor bas Chanah

Batyah bas Esther

Rachel bas Hinda Reizel

Julie Neshla bas Jamileh

Chavah Leah bas Esther

Rachel Leah bas Sarah

Tehilah Hadassah bas Elanah

Helen bas Chanah Miriam

Hadas bas Orah

To add names of individuals who need a r’fuah sh’leimah to next week’s T’hilim column, please email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and complete the Google form.