Time to celebrate Rosh Hashana/Yom Teru’ah!

This upcoming Sunday evening will be the beginning of the Rosh Hashanah / Yom Teruah celebrations! On this holiday you will hear a lot of shofar blasts; for the religious families they will most likely be filling up the synagogues for some special prayers, while the secular families will usually stay home and enjoy a special feast surrounded by family and friends. And of course, with most of the Israeli celebrations, food plays a very important part. Apples and honey and a special round challah are special symbolic foods that are shared at a meal to symbolise a sweet new year.

This holiday originates from the Tanach (Bible) in Leviticus 23:23-25 and Numbers 29:1-6. Basically God commanded the children of Israel to have a sabbath day, blow trumpets and to offer sacrifices as a sweet aroma to God. Unlike the other feasts, their is given no direct reason why we should celebrate this feast. So it is a bit of a mystery. But hey, any reason to celebrate and have a holiday is a good one I think!

This holiday is 10 days prior to Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) which is a solemn day of fasting. So coupled with the joyous celebrations is the beginning of inner reflections. One tradition is to go to a running body of water and throw pebbles or the lint from your pockets into the water; each pebble or piece of lint representing a sin that you want to ask God to forgive you for.

I think since having children, my husband and I have been more excited about celebrating these special holidays and wanting to build special traditions for our family.