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High Holy Days

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The Jewish High Holy Days, marking the new year of the jewish calendar, begin this Wednesday evening, at sundown, with Rosh Hashanah.

Rosh Hashanah is observed the first and second day of the seventh month of the Jewish calender, Tishri. Coming in the Fall season of the western calendar, usually in September.

The traditions of Rosh Hashanah are simple, as the only commandment specified for the holiday is the blowing of the shofar a ram’s horn). In temple the shofar is blown on Rosh Hashanah to herald the beginning of the period known as the High Holy Days.

On the first day of Rosh Hashanah, after the afternoon services, Jews visit a body of water or pond, containing live fish, and throw pieces of bread into the water, to symbolically "cast away" their sins. The fish's dependence on water symbolizes the Jews dependence on G-d, as a fish's eyes never close, G-d's watchful eyes never cease.

It is believed that on Rosh Hashanah the destiny of all mankind is recorded by G-d in the Book of Life. After Rosh Hashanah services, as the congregants leave the synagogue they say to each other...

"May you be inscribed in the Book of Life"

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L'shanah tova to all Crazies who will be celebrating the arrival of 5765.

Jeff, thank you for the reference to Tashlich -- it's the most special part of the service to me, other than the blowing of the Shofar.

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Do you remember the 'good old days,' back in The Bronx, around this time of year?

Just before 'The Holidays,' you'd walk through the streets; the weather had turned a bit cooler, and all of the windows, in the apartment houses, were open. The sounds of people filled your ears, and you, almost, felt as if you were eavesdropping.

But, it wasn't the sounds, or the sights, that caught your attention. No, it was the smells. "Mama" was busy, in the kitchen, preparing enough food for a small army, "for The Holidays...." And, the aroma of chicken soup and gefilte fish filled the air. By the time you got home, you were starving. Luckily, your Mama was one of the many who were cooking vast amounts of food, and she snuck you a little 'nosh.....'

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