By: Steve Kirschenbaum
Eicha begins with the sadness of Yerushalayim sitting badad, sitting alone. Badad here
is certainly meant as something which is sad and distressing. However, we find in the
Berachos of Bilam that he blessed Klal Yisrael as being badad, as being alone; that is
seen as a blessing. So, Badad is used as a negative description and as a positive one.
There are two types of badad. There is loneliness that makes everything more painful
when a person feels alone and isolated. However, another loneliness is when you are
connected to someone in such a strong way that no one else matters. There is a badad
l’ra, and a badad l’tov. It is l’tov when we are alone and separate from the nations of the
world; we take pride in the uniqueness of Klal Yisrael and are not worried about anyone
around us. That is a good badad. The badad which is sad occurs when we are totally
alone with no positive and productive interaction.
Sometimes, we look around and we see other people more attached to Torah, Avoda,
and ma’asim tovim – that can make us feel removed from the Shechina. But if our
connection would be such that we can disregard what is happening around us, it would
be extraordinary. When we grow and develop a closeness with each other and HKBH,
that is an intimacy we are supposed to be connected to, that is a badad l’tov.
This may be a pshat in avira d’ar’a is machkim. Yerushalayim fosters a much closer
connection to the HKBH. When a person has a desire to know and a desire to learn, he
is given wisdom. Avira D’ara, the air of Eretz Yisrael gives a person a focus and a desire
to be connected. If we feel the sadness on Tisha B’av of being disconnected from the
Shechina, then it won’t be too hard to do the things that are necessary on Tisha B’av —
to highlight the sadness of the Galus Hashechina and the fact that we are distant from
The Imrei Emes asks how was Hashem allowed to destroy the Beis Hamikdash — the
halacha is that you can’t knock down a shul until a new one is built in its place? He
answers that the third Beis Hamikdash is already built and ready to come down.
However, we need to want to be reunited with Hashem first. The first time we find crying
in the Torah is when Hashem separated the lower waters from the upper waters — the
lower waters cried that it also wants to be in Shamayim. In that merit, the main service
of Sukkos was the nisuch ha’mayim at the Simchas Beis Hashoeva. We need to learn
from the lower waters and cry to Hashem that we don’t want to be isolated from Him