Nancy Chunn, American, b. 1941
October 2, 1997 (Jewish New Year 5757)Learn More
The Jewish New Year—Rosh Hashanah—is celebrated on the first two days of the autumn month of Tishrei, which marked the beginning of the harvest year in ancient Israel. On the holiday, a shofar (ram’s horn) is blown during the religious services, and celebrants wish each other the traditional greeting of "Shana Tova" (Have a good year). Rosh Hashanah is rich in diverse customs, including those related to food, such as apples and honey, symbolizing a sweet new year.
Rosh Hashanah initiates the Days of Awe—a ten-day period of repentance, prayer, and reflection on the deeds of the past year. This period culminates on the Day of Atonement—Yom Kippur—the holiest Jewish holiday, and a fast day. According to tradition, God opens the "Book of Life" on Rosh Hashanah and closes it on Yom Kippur, sealing the fate of each Jew for the coming year.
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