Photo Credit: Jewish Press

What is the significance of the number eight?

During the Pesach Seder, we say that eight is the days until the baby’s bris. But there is something else which also has the significance of the number eight, and that is Shmini Atzeres. In Israel, Simchas Torah and Shmini Atzeres are celebrated together, eight represents both of them simultaneously.


Simchas Torah 2023 in Jerusalem was very memorable, and not for good reasons.

The constant sirens. The rumors swirling around as to what may or may not be going on. Seeing members of my community escorting their son, now changed into his army uniform, to catch a bus to an undisclosed location.

Yet we tried to continue to dance. To celebrate the fact that we are privileged to be the nation with the Torah.

For centuries various enemies have tried to eradicate us, yet we remain.

Still connected to Torah and our roots.

Still celebrating.


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Yisroel Picker is a Social Worker and certified trauma therapist with a private therapy practice. He also writes and speaks publicly about parenting, communication, cognitive biases and child sex abuse prevention. He lives in Jerusalem with his wife and their five children.