If a Siyum is akin to a graduation, the Siyum HaShas, the conclusion of the study of the entire Babylonian Talmud is one gargantuan graduation! It’s no surprise then that the ceremony marking this remarkable feat would be an event celebrated all over the world, filled with deep emotion, both for those who personally reached this target, and for those who observed the process.
Though Talmud can be learned by anyone at any time, Rabbi Meir Shapiro of Lublin proposed the novel Daf Yomi (page-a-day) concept at the First World Congress of the World Agudath Israel in 1923. Following this unique approach where Jews the world over study the same page of Talmud each day, disciplined students can complete all six orders of the Talmud (“Shas” in its Hebrew acronym) – 2,711 pages in all – in a seven and a half year stretch.
Launched on Rosh Hashana, 1923, the Daf Yomi movement has steadily gained momentum. If attendance at a Siyum HaShas celebration is any indication of its popularity, one only need look at the 11th Siyum HaShas in 2005, where approximately 120,000 people made the trek to New York’s Madison Square Garden, New Jersey’s Meadowlands stadium, and a number of satellite locations across North America. Almost double that amount is expected for the 12th Siyum HaShas to be held in August 2012 where Jewish men and women finishing any Jewish text will be among the celebrators.
Indeed, by all historic accounts the 12th Siyum Hashas will be the largest celebration of Jewish learning in over 2,000 years – an world-event not to be missed.
So, are you ready to take on your own Siyum-focused study project and be part of history? MySiyum.com can help you choose a text, and provide a personal over-the- phone teacher to help you study and keep you on track — at no cost to you!
What are you waiting for? Click here to get started.