How is Rosh Hashanah Celebrated?

Rosh Hashanah is a 2-day festival observed on the first and second days of Tishrei. This Jewish holiday is celebrated in lots of different ways by different kinds of Jews. Rosh Hashanah is the only Jewish holiday which is observed for two entire days. Generally, this is celebrated with prayer services in synagogues and festive meals with family and friends.  While Rosh Hashanah is a time for prayers, reflection, and reconnecting with God, it is also a time to enjoy with your loved ones.

  1. A festive meal is a basic part of Rosh Hashanah as in other Jewish holidays.  It is part of Jewish custom to eat  certain foods like round challah and apples dipped in honey, which symbolize one’s desire for a sweet year. All other dishes prepared for Rosh Hashanah symbolize blessings and abundance.
  2. Rosh Hashanah is observed as a day of rest. Although this is considered as a time for prayer, it is also a perfect time for family gatherings and catching up with friends. It is this time that Jews reunite with their relatives and spend intimate chats as they enjoy their meal.
  3. Jews spend most of their time praying in synagogues. Rosh Hashanah is an opportunity for many Jews to intensify their relationship with God and to ask for blessings. Prayer services are observed longer than Sabbath or other holidays. Men and women dress up appropriately. They engage in fervent prayers while listening to the rabbi as he recites the chazan. Rosh Hashanah is also a time for repentance and soul searching.

Rosh Hashanah is significant to Jews as this is considered the Day of Judgment. According to Jewish beliefs, God judges humans throughout the year and decides during Rosh Hashanah whether they deserve to be written on ‘The Book of Life’ or not. Those who are listed in this book are blessed with a new year of great joy and abundance.

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