BINA Living

This month’s classes:

Monday, July 1
Unity, Tolerance and Acceptance
BINA Living
Starts 7:15PM

Why do people smell spices after a havdallah ceremony?

Q: During the Havdallah ceremony at the conclusion of Shabbat I noticed that people take spices and smell them and then put their fingernails next to a candle and look at them. It all seems a little strange, can you please explain it to me?

A: On Shabbat we are given access to a deeper dimension of our soul. When Shabbat ends and we lose that consciousness, we may feel a little empty. We therefore smell spices to revive our spirits. The reason for fire dates back to the very beginning of creation. Adam and Eve were created on a Friday. Due to the holiness of Shabbat, on Friday night it remained light outside. So the first time Adam encountered darkness was on Saturday night. He took two stones and knocked them together creating fire. To commemorate that event we make a special blessing thanking G-d for creating fire.