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Rosh Hashanah occurs on the first and seconds Much of the day is spent in the Synagogue, G-d records the judgement in the Book of Life,
days of the Jewish month Tishri. where the regular daily liturgy (order of service) is where he sets out who is going to live and die,
Rosh Hashanah means `Head of the Year' or somewhat expanded. There is a special prayer who will have a good time and a bad time. The
`First of the Year'. book called the Machzor used for Rosh book and judgement are finally sealed on Yom
It is commonly known as the Jewish New Year, Hasannah and Yom Kippur. Kippur.
but isn't perceptive because there is little Eating apples dipped in honey as a symbol of the
similarity between one of the holiest days of the wish for a sweet new year. In The Synagogue:
year and the midnight drinking bash with our New Jews also dip bread in honey, instead of A lot of time is spent in the Synagogue on Rosh
Year. sprinkling salt on it, for the same reason of a Hashanah when there are special services that
sweet new year. emphasise G-d's kingship.
There is one similarity; many people use the New The Tashlikh is a popular observance, where One of the rituals for Rosh Hashanah is the
Year to plan a better life, making `resolutions'. Jews walk to flowing water, such as a river, and blowing of the Shofar, where 100 notes are
The Jewish New Year is a time to begin empty their pockets into the water, symbolically sounded in a special rhythm.
introspection, looking back at the past mistakes of casting off their sins.
the past year and planning changes to make in Tashlikh is commonly observed on the afternoon In The Home:
the New Year. of the first day, and isn't mentioned in the Torah New Year isn't only celebrated in the Synagogue,
but is a long-standing custom. but at home as well where a special meal is
Rosh Hashanah is also known as Yom Ha- If it is on Shabbat, the synagogue service does it served with the emphasis on sweetness.
Zikkaron, the day of remembrance or Yom in the Sunday afternoon to avoid carrying the Apples are dipped in honey, as a symbol for a
Teruah, the day of the sounding of the horn bread in their pockets. sweet New Year that Jews hope for. A sweet
shofar. The use of white as a symbol of purity. The carrot sew called Tzimmes is often served.
cantor wears a white gown called a kittel, and The Jewish Challah bread served comes as a
The Shofar: there are covers on the Bimah, ark and lectern round loaf as a symbol of the circle of life and of
The Shofar is a ram's horn which is blown like a which are also white. the year.
trumpet. People send each other cards and greet each There is often a pomegranate on the table
One of the most important observances of this other in the Synagogue by saying `May you be because the fruit has 613 seeds, one for each of
festival is the hearing of the blowing of the Shofar recorded in the Book of Life for a good year.' the commandments that a Jew is obliged to keep.
in the Synagogue. This is a tradition.
A total of 100 notes are sounded everyday, and It is a time of serious thought about life and a
there are 4 different types of Shofar notes. chance to ask questions about your actions The Significance of Rosh Hashanah:
The Tekiah a 3-sec sustained note; the Shevarim throughout the year. The anniversary of the world's creation.
three 1-sec notes rising in tone, the Teruah a Questions considered in Rosh Hasannah include The renewal of the bond between G-d and Israel,
series of short, staccato notes for over a period of what's the most meaningful thing in my life? What Isaiah 21-22 is read as a reminder of this.
3-secs and the Tekiah gedolah, the final blast in are the most significant things I've achieved in the The Day of Judgement `Yom Hadin' where Jews
the set which lasts for 10-secs minimum. past year? must atone for their sins during this period before
The Torah gives no reason for this practice, but Yom Kippur to modify G-d's judgement by
one that has been suggested is the Shofar's Rosh Hasannah is the Jewish New Year festival repentance.
sound id a call to repentance. and commemorates the creation of the world. It
The Shofar is not blown if the holiday is on lasts for two days, and the traditional greeting
Shabbat. between Jews is "L'shanah tovah" for a good
Customs and Observances:
Having a hair-cut before Rosh Hasannah to show Rosh Hasannah is also a judgement day, when
renewal. Jews believe that G-d balances a person's good
No work is permitted on Rosh Hasannah, cooking deeds over the last year against their bad deeds,
is permitted but the lighting of a flame isn't so a and decided what the next year will be like for
timer is needed, as on Shabbat. them.