A midrash imagines universal stillness preceding G-d's giving of the Ten Commandments: "No bird chirped, no fowl flew, no ox bellowed....The sea did not stir, no creature uttered a sound. The world was quiet and silent" (Exodus Rabbah 29).
How awesome! At the moment that changed the world -- irrevocably and forever -- silence reigned.
Of course, as Ecclesiastes teaches, "There is a time to be silent and a time to speak" (Ecclesiastes 3:7). On Saturday night we will indeed speak as we celebrate Shavuot, which commemorates mattan Torah, the giving of Torah. Our building will hum with the noise learning (and socializing) at our Tikkun Leil Shavuot, nighttime study about that momentous event at the trembling mountain.
We will begin at 9 pm with a brief maariv service, followed by the Tikkun. We will conclude around 11:45. Stay for as long as you like. Desserts will be served. Join us on Saturday evening! It will be way better than anything you'll find on TV.
Shabbat Shalom and Chag Sameach!
Rabbi Jeffrey Weill