ROSH HASHANAH

Understanding_the_High_Holidays_(medium)_(english)Rosh Hashanah 2015 – Jewish New Year – Rosh Hashanah
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Understanding the High HolidaysUnderstanding the High Holidays
The overarching theme of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur is “change:” to change from what we were before and to become new individuals.
by Rabbi Emanuel Feldman

Tishrei, the month of Rosh Hashana, is the first month of the universe, and just as when God completed His Creation He contemplated and evaluated it, so does He do every Rosh Hashana — which means that Rosh Hashana is actually the Day of Judgment for the universe and for mankind collectively and individually.
That explains why, than any other Jewish holiday, Rosh Hashana’s liturgy is not limited to Jewish themes exclusively, but contains so many universal themes as well. On no other occasion, for example, is God referred to as “King over all the earth,” and at no other time is God’s Holy Temple called a “house of prayer for all the nations.” This is all a reflection of the universal judgment of this day.
God evaluates us collectively, just as a shepherd looks over his flock with one glance. And individually, He also judges us like a shepherd who looks at each single sheep as it files through a narrow opening in the gate. So Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur are more than just a Jewish version of New Year’s Day. It’s a time of great introspection, of teshuva/repentance, of stock-taking. According to an ancient Jewish tradition, it marks the creation of Adam and Eve — who were created, who sinned, and who were judged all on the same day.

That explains why, more than any other Jewish holiday, Rosh Hashana’s liturgy is not limited to Jewish themes exclusively, but contains so many universal themes as well. On no other occasion, for example, is God referred to as “King over all the earth,” and at no other time is God’s Holy Temple called a “house of prayer for all the nations.” This is all a reflection of the universal judgment of this day.
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