I have an issue with what to do on Tisha B’Av. I know we’re supposed to think about the terrible churban that occured on it and mourn it but it’s very hard to do that all day (especially since it’s a very long day) without being able to do anything else. We can’t even learn on that day and I can’t learn the mournful Tisha B’Av gemaros all day especially because of the fast. Would it be muttar to listen on my mp3 to Tisha B’Av shiurim and occasionally study my college books so that the fast shouldn’t be as difficult for me? Last year the only things I did on Tisha B’Av afternoon was listen to Tisha B’Av shiurim and sleep.
I understand your difficulty, T’Bav is a hard day, and there are many things we cannot do, and the truth is, that it is supposed to be a hard day. However, it is specifically because of the difficulties that we undergo, to mourn the destruction of the Bais Hamikdash that will give us the zechus to be present when it will be rebuilt. As chazal told us, “all those who mourn over Yerushalayim will merit seeing in its joy”. In fact one of the rishonim say that there will be two times of techiyas hameisim, (resurrecting of the dead) one before the bais Hamikdash will be built, and the one for the masses. The first one is specifically for those who mourn the Bais Hamikdash, so that they should be able to rejoice in its rebuilding. You can surely listen to T’bav shiurim all day long, however studying college books would be included in hesech hadaas, and should not be done. There are many good books out there that talk about the medrashim on the churban or you can read stories about the holocaust, there are many such books around.
May H-shem rebuild the Bais Hamikdash soon so that Tisha B’av will already turn into a Yom Tov.
O:CH 554-22, MG:A ibid 22, M:B 43,49, Biur Halacha D:H Ad.