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5 years ago  ::  Nov 04, 2009 - 11:34AM #1
precept
Posts: 17

Could I be enlightened? re Is  the lunar month/lunar calendar, from the time of the ancient Israelites , still in use in orthodox Judaism?


And how is the numbering of each day of the week determined?


If the last day of the previously completed lunar month is the 5th day; what is the numbered day of the first day of the now following lunar month? Is it the first day of the week or the 6th day of the week? 


I am confused as to whether  numbering the days of the lunar month in any way disrupt the weekly sequence of the seven days in the weekly cycle.


And more specifically; if the last day of the  expired lunar month is the 5th day...what day follows re the following lunar month...is it the 6th day?


I do appreciate your patience in seeing me through my ignorance of this matter.


precept

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5 years ago  ::  Nov 04, 2009 - 8:44PM #2
ffb
Posts: 2,259

"Is  the lunar month/lunar calendar, from the time of the ancient Israelites , still in use in orthodox Judaism?"


Yes -- our months are lunar cycles of 29 or 30 days. While ancient Judaism relied on eyewitness testimony to establish the lunar cycle, we now have computations upon which we rely.


"And how is the numbering of each day of the week determined?"


Days are reckoned from the evening before the day, so from Saturday night to Sunday night is "the first day", and then comes "the second day" etc until Friday night which begins "the sabbath day" (the seventh day).


"If the last day of the previously completed lunar month is the 5th day; what is the numbered day of the first day of the now following lunar month? Is it the first day of the week or the 6th day of the week?"


If the month ends on a "fifth day" then the first day of the new month is on the "sixth day" of the week. This evening begins the fifth day, which happens to be the 18th of the lunar month of Cheshvan. The weekly counting has no effect on the monthly counting and vice versa.

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5 years ago  ::  Nov 05, 2009 - 3:10AM #3
NahumS
Posts: 1,789

The Jewish calendar is lunar-solar.


A completely lunar calendar has 355 days. The solar year has 365. Moslems have a completely lunar calendar - the month of Ramadan can "drift" throughout the seasons - every year it comes 11 days earlier according to the solar calendar - therefore it can fall in the  summer, fall winter or spring.


The Pesah, Shavuot and Sukkot festivals (Passover, Pentacost and Tabernacles) are agricultural as well as historical and tied to specific seasons - Passover to the spring, for example.


In order for the festivals to come out in the right season, an extra month is added every few years. In ancient times, when the calendar was under the jurisdiction of the Sanhedrin (court), this was done as needed - according to seasonal criteria. Since the calendar was fixed mathematically (about 400 CE - when the Sanhedrin was disbanded by the Romans), this is done 7 times every 19 years. Within the 19 year cycle, years 3,6,8,11,14,17,19 have a second month of Adar - the month preceding Nisan, when Passover falls.


The addition of a 13th month periodically allows the lunar calendar to catch up with the solar year, and  keeps the festivals in their proper season.

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