Nissim Behar zt"l of Turkey 5719/1959
from his La Práctica del Judaísmo (Ladino)
The 18th of lyar, the 33rd day of the counting of the Omer --Hebrew
Lag Ba'omer) is the day of the Petira (passing) of HaRav Shimon Bar
Yochai. This day is celebrated as the "Hilulla" (wedding and
union) of HaRav Shimon Bar Yochai with his Creator.1
2. On that day, we omit Tachanun in the prayers, and from that day
or it is again permissible to celebrate weddings, cut one's hair, and
shave. These things were forbidden from the beginning of the Omer until
3 We have the custom to kindle many lights and candles in the synagogue
on the night of Lag Ba'Omer.
4. In Eretz Yisrael, Lag Ba'omer is celebrated by singing and dancing
around bonfires, kindled in honor of HaRav Shimon Bar Yochai.
5. After Arvit on the night of Lag Ba'Omer, we have the Minhag to read
parts the Zohar Hakadosh relevant to the passing of HaRav Shimon Bar
Yochai, followed by the song: "Bar Yochai Nimshachta".
1 Lag Ba'Omer is the anniversary of the death of HaRav Shimon Bar Yochai,
of the Zohar Hakadosh. We are told that on that day his house was filled
very strong I light, and at sunset he returned his holy soul to its
normally the day of the death of a Tzaddik is marked as a Taanit, it
was the wish HaRav Shimon Bar Yochai that the day of his passing should
be remembered year with joy and happiness, in an atmosphere of Mitzva
remarks are with the endorsement of the (former) Hahambashi, HaRav Raphael
E. Saban zt"l and the endorsement of the Beit Din of Turkey. These
are based on the Sephardic tradition from Turkey, handed down to us
from Castile, Spain.