Some of our people believe that the Moedim are done away with; just as the Torah along with all the divine decrees and rulings. Many say, “We can’t keep them, because we don’t have the sacrifices, offerings, and the priesthood to officiate them for us”. The Moedim is defined as “The Appointed Times” outlined in the Torah given by the Creator to His people to meet with Him at specific times during the weeks, months, and years- beginning with Shabbats, Rosh Chodesh, Spring, Summer, and Fall festivals including the Day of Atonement known as Yom Kippur. These weekly, monthly, and yearly appointments also known as “Set Apart Events or Meetings” have become points of contention among our people. More specifically, times of confusion, division, and debate contribute to our inability to see our need to gather together while in our exile. Our designation, as “The Divine and Separated People” from among Nations, demands a continual seeking of Hebraic knowledge and cultural understanding of the Moedim. Within the word MO-ED-IM, the Hebrew letters give us several clues and indicators as to how we should truly understand these historical events. Let’s deal with the first Hebrew letter of the word Moedim, the letter “Mem” transliterated as “M” (English with no meaning or significance). The cultural meaning of our letter “Mem” has to do with “water” and the idea of taking action- “from”… going back and forth; from one location to another to get water. The next letter “O” (no significance or meaning by itself) is recognized as the Hebrew letter “Waw”, which represents a “tent peg” or “hook” to “join” or “connect” thereby making the tent or dwelling ”firm and established”. The third Hebrew letter is called “Ayin” which represents the “eye”- meaning to “see”, “visual observation” and “knowledge”, as one who receives “knowledge and experience” through what he or she sees through their eyes; by the way, which happens to be one of the most powerful of all five senses we possess as human beings. Next, the Hebrew letter “Dalet” is transliterated as “D” in English (which has no actual meaning) Hebraically, this letter represents a “tent door”, the action of “opening and closing”- “back and forth”. Finally, we have the suffix ending of “im” meaning…. many or more than one (masculine plural). So what does all this mean? Well, when you look at the Hebraic cultural significance of each of the letters and combine them into the word Moedim, you will quickly see that the Appointed Times known as Moedim have to do with going “back and forth” and “to be connected” repeatedly to the Tent of Meeting or Dwelling place to receive knowledge. We will only truly understand the meanings of the Moedim by taking some form of action; gaining knowledge and constantly reminding ourselves and our children of what the Creator has done for us. While in exile, there are a variety of opinions as to how one should keep or observe them. Some choose verbal acknowledgment, while others use the elements of the historical accounts such as cooking a lamb, or goat, removing leaven from their homes, blowing shofars, and setting up tents and decorations, either way, there is some form of remembrance. I would be ashamed if I were to forget to mention to you the root of the word Moedim and what it represents. The root-like every plant, shrub, and tree is the foundation and strength of its very existence. The Hebrew root word “ED” (ayd) means to “see the door”. What door? Answer: The door of The Tent of Meeting. The children of Y’srael are commanded to “observe’ or “keep” these Appointed Times (Moedim) which cause so many of us frustration and anxiety during the year while completing our punishment in exile. Yet there is a solution found within the pages of the Torah- just one word which can help alleviate some of our discomfort-the word is called “Shamar” which means to “guard” unlike the western-minded translators who told us to observe or keep. The “stem” of any word is the translation of the “root”(which can be parsed in several ways). If the “root ” is translated improperly, you will not receive the correct understanding of the word. Our Oppressor has disabled us through his language and provided his cultural understanding of words and definitions, therefore causing confusion, frustration, and exhaustion. While given the charge to guard these Set Apart Meetings- Appointments – Events- Celebrations – Festivals and Gatherings (Moedim) the children of Y’srael became “Witnesses” using all five (5) senses, (1) see (2) hear, (3) touch, (4) taste and (5) smell; thus making them into bonafide witnesses. As a descendant of the children of Y’srael, we have an obligation to guard these Appointed Times (Moedim)’ ‘. We should give testimony as our ancestors did to the “Existence” of the True and Living Power (Elohim) YHWH by commemorating His Appointed Times (Moedim) that are governed by His creation of the Sun, Moon, and stars (the great lights designated for the Moedim- see Genesis 1:14) giving testimony themselves. In conclusion, as your brother [Achi’ka] I’m writing this article to encourage and inspire our people to “guard” and give your “testimony” to the Moedim. Our Power (Elohim) YHWH has done great and awesome things for our ancestors and He intends to do great and terrible things for us as well. Remember, how He has killed the firstborn of Mitzrayim of all the male humans and animals (Pesach) Remember we left in hurry, with no time to leaven our bread (Feast of Matzah) Remember, that He has declared to our prophet Yirmeyahu that we are His (First-Fruits) and have given the land with (First-Fruits) to offer to Him as a reminder of what He had promised to our fathers Avraham, Yitschak, and Ya’aqov Remember, He gave us the Torah (Shavaoth) Remember that He continuously heralds us with the sound of the trumpet to proclaim His Highly Set Apart Days of Awe (Yom Teruah) Don’t forget that He forgave the “Great Sin” of the Golden Calf (Yom Kippur) Always be reminded that He Tabernacled among His people in the wilderness for forty years (Sukkot) and they lacked nothing. We’re constantly reminded every Shabbat (without the required offerings) of His feeding our ancestors every day for six days and receiving a double portion of manna. Remember the Shabbat- it’s a sign of our being Set -Apart unto Him We give Him praise and appreciation because He established our nation on the first day of the month of Abib as the beginning of months to us (Rosh Chodesh). Let’s always remember and never forget what He has done for our ancestors and constantly remind ourselves what He has promised to do for us. Hallu- YAH! Hallu-YAH! Hallu-YAH!