Rabbi Pinhas Ben Yair

March 22nd 2011

When visiting Safed, it is customary to visit the tomb of Rabbi Pinhas ben Yair. The great sage was the son-in-law of Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai, a sage in the second century. Rabbi Pinhas was well known for his humble disposition and did not want anything on his tomb since he believed that people should be inscribed by their deeds alone. He also instructed his students not to pray by his tomb. Therefore, his students walked around the tomb seven times reading Psalms, a tradition that is still kept to this day.