hold on to your fire extinguisher because this one's a doozy.
Before designing the pattern I refresh my memory by reading about the holiday. Reading about Lag Ba'Omer, I recognized the costumes, but not the reasons for the costumes.
The Costumes are: having bonfires, shooting bow and arrows, going to a specific mountain where there's a huge fire and male toddlers over 3 get their first haircut and something to do with lions.
So, it turned out this holiday celebrate 2 important events, the end of a plague that killed over 20,000 of Rabi Akiva's student as punishment for disagreements. The plague started on Passover and ended in Lag Ba'omer, so about a month, which is a very short amount of time to loose 20,000 people. This is the source of the bow and arrow, it's to remind people of the (rain)bow after the flood, a sign of peace between people and god.
The second event is the death of Rabi Shimon Bar Yochay, a famous Kabalistic sage, he gets the bonfires for the knowledge he discovered that lit the way to scholars that followed. The big celebration on the mountain is where he was buried.
So far, strange story, but not more than other holidays, however the reason I had no memory of this is that in the beginning of the 20th century, Zionistic activists were trying to shake the image of the Jewish immigrants from Europe, and form a new notion of Judaism, which was less about scholarship and more about love of country, working the land and bravery. They picked a character that was associated with Rabi Akiva, an army commander called Bar Kochva, who led the rebellion in which Rabi Akiva was killed. There was very little known about him. They gave the traditions another meaning, the bonfires are the way the rebels send messages to one another, and the bow and arrow are a weapon they used.
I still can't figure out the lion part.
What do I think is celebrated? non of those things. I think there are holidays that are just things people feel like they need to do, like having a candles celebration in mid winter or having a harvest festival. I think that dancing around a fire, telling stories about heroes and ordeals, and shooting a bow and arrow is a human need that different people and cultures make up reasons for.
a pdf pattern, 80X80 stitches, charted in 8 DMCs. Pattern in both black and white and color in Hebrew, English and a non religion version with "We are the granddaughters of witches you couldn't burn"
- a pdf pattern, 80X80 stitches, charted in 8 DMCs. Pattern in both black and white and color in Hebrew, English and a non religion version with "We are the granddaughters of witches you couldn't burn"