Today is the Jewish holiday of Lag Ba'Omer:
A special day, in which light comes to transform the darkness of materiality on the way to Shavuot - the time when the Oral Law was given to Moses.
The significance of this time was encapsulated - no doubt unconsciously - in today's Times.
First there were a couple of features on the Dalai Lama's visit to England. Ann Treneman's humorous piece about his visit to Westminster, was entitled Lama drama as Westminster sees the light. Sure enough, the Dalai Lama was pictured at the Royal Albert Hall, a sun effect beaming over him:
The Peter Brooke cartoon had an unflattering picture of Gordon Brown keeping the Dalai Lama at a distance, whilst welcoming him with a copy of his new book, entitled Courage:
Immediately underneath this was an article by Ben Macintyre, entitled : A history lesson from the Warsaw Ghetto:
It is about ghetto historian, Emanuel Ringelblum's, act of resistance without parallel, a feat of historical heroism that has only come fully to light recently: he set about preserving the present, for the benefit of the future:
And then there was the obituary of Siegmund Nissel, a member of the Amadeus String Quartet:
Nissel arrived in England from Vienna on the Kindertransport. In 1940, he was interned as an enemy alien on the Isle of Man, where he met Peter Schidlof, who also became a member of the group. A third, member, Norbert Brainin, had been interned in another camp and had met Peter Schidlof there.
This story gives hope to all of us. For who knows what light can come out of darkness, and which experiences might turn around our lives in the morst transformative way. This is the lesson of Lag Ba'Omer. Out of darkness, the great transformative light.