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Rosh Hashanah

The Beginning of the New Year

The Pivotal Role of Tending the Seedlings
A mother’s relationship with her children impacts all of the future.
What Being Mocked As a Child Taught Me About Judging Others
I think, “You really never know where a person is coming from.”
An Unexpected Apple and Honey Delivery in the Forests of Japan
I could have hollered into the woods and nobody would have heard me. But I guess G‑d did, because a package arrived unexpectedly in the mail.
A Young Man, a Sick Wife and a Wise Rabbi
“I need a rabbi! Help me! I need a rabbi right now!!” The shocking, ear-splitting cry shattered the stillness in the synagogue.
What the Woman Yelling in the Market Was Trying to Say
It’s important to take my personal experience and perception of pain and put it aside as I try to step into the other woman’s shoes.
5 Affirmations to Keep in Mind This Rosh Hashanah
It is G‑d’s will that I be free, that I be loving, that I be holy, that I be joyful, that I be creative, that I be who I truly am
This Is What You Need to Tell the Demons Inside You
We have to remember that we are inherently pure and good, and each day is a new day and a new opportunity.
Riding the Ups and Downs, and Really Living Life
I had a moment a few months ago. You know, one of those wake-up calls, where you say to yourself: “If this is happening. I need to look and see what I’m doing. Am I really living? What direction am I heading towards in my life, and what are my priorities?”
An Adult Daughter Muses As She Visits Her Childhood Home
Was I really returning home, or just to the memories of what once was?
The Moment I Stopped Dreading the High Holidays
When I first experienced the High Holidays, I found them nothing short of terrifying. It all moved so fast. What was I supposed to do? What was I supposed to recite?
From Chaos to Clarity
Many things vie for my attention: my family needs me, work must be dealt with, and my own inner world, vast and detailed, wants to be recognized. I wonder if I can manage to balance all these aspects of myself when the upcoming holidays draw so much of my energy.
Why We Shouldn't Feel Nervous on Rosh Hashanah
Once we’ve worked on ourselves and repented, G‑d no longer looks at what we did—because we are a new, changed person.
E-Mail in the Sky
Once words are in print, they feel very permanent. Once you put it out there, it’s out there; you can’t take it back.
New Year, New Person
Leah was unhappy and frustrated at work. Her husband was also miserable with his job. Ever since they got married, they lived in the same apartment, had the same jobs. Everything was the same. They were stuck and unhappy.
Finding Ourselves Through Others
The Meaning of Community
He knows we are not angels, because He didn’t create us to be perfect. But He did create us with the ability to connect with others and become better people . . .
The Child I Prayed For
Life after Loss
A Rosh Hashanah Miracle
Suddenly Papa Yosef Chayim heard a sharp knock on the door. Curious who would be visiting at such an hour, he got up and opened the door. To his shock, he found a burly robber pointing a pistol directly in his face...
Losing to Win
Learning to Let Go
I know it’s a childish and irrational projection, but that’s how I sum up my heavenly Father – the One up there who has no malice towards me, but is certainly not dependable, who will lure me into a false sense of security, if I let Him, but then will pull the rug out and disappear in the middle of the night...
Perfect Vision
The sweetness that we hope for in the new year will, in part, come from how sweet we choose to see our lives, and how much we work to sweeten the lives of others...
Sound Bites of the Soul
The Journey from Selves to Self
Bands sing of freedom from Apartheid from South Africa's darkened face. The music lifts me off the grass and bounces me like musical notes down the hill. I dance and dance. But my heart slides with the knowledge that this is not my music...
The Cry of the Shofar
Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish New Year, and also the anniversary of the creation of man. In fact, the first time a shofar was heard in creation was when G‑d created Adam. G‑d blew Adam’s soul into him, and the sound it made was the sound of the shofar. Just like G‑d created mankind on Rosh Hashanah, on the anniversary of that day, G‑d is recreating us. We are G‑d’s shofar...
Marry Me?!
I am drama incarnate with fists balled, my silver hoop earrings, peasant skirt and leather cowboy boots. My stance is distant, almost defiant, like a dare, and I am crying. “As time goes by does it get more or less clear to you that we’re meant to be together?” The sentence rushes from my lips anxious and pleading…
Sweet Beginnings
A Parenting Lesson for the New Year
I was in the midst of tears when I asked myself, "Elana, do you want to infuse your home with a lovely essence by being the akeret habayit, or are you going to fall into the trap of being angry and be the okrut bayit, an uprooter?"
Sweet Rewards of Rosh Hashanah Rituals
"What's up with the brisket, Grandma?" my preteen son asked, echoing my suspicions that bubbe's famous brisket—the eternal pillar of my family's High Holiday feasts—had undergone an unprecedented facelift...
The Person I Never Thought I Would Be
I had come from a difficult beginning and shown up in Israel wanting to learn about my spiritual tradition, but with a strong fear and distrust of authority and establishment. After trying one school for about two months, the plea inside turned into a scream so loud that I ran away...
Chana and Penina
A Lesson In Sensitivity
We read the story of Chana and Penina on Rosh Hashanah, when we pray for a good, sweet year. We pray for abundant blessings. Yet I believe there is a lesson in their story, cautioning us that with blessings come responsibility...
Rosh Hashanah and the Power of Speech
Not one time do we mention our wrongdoings or ask for forgiveness on this awesome day. Why? Because on this Day of Judgment our words have a powerful effect, and our prayers have the strength to transform . . .
An Elegant and Creative Rosh Hashanah Table
After investing hours and hours on food preparation you will most certainly want to place your delicacies on an elegant table. Convinced? Here's how you can make this year's table look like a bountiful feast befitting royalty...
New Year's Resolutions
The first week I actually fulfill my promises. I manage to control my temper, the floors of my home are so clean you could eat off of them, and I'm the perfect mother, daughter, wife, sister, boss, employee, you name it. The second week into my New Year's resolutions' promises is not so successful...
Standing by the Door
My love for the baby is so intense that I feel pained to be far away when she is crying. But how can I explain this emotional response to a three-year-old?
Make sure to begin the New Year right with foods that carry symbolic meaning and Jewish tradition, and that are, of course, absolutely delicious!
Savoring the Sweetness: A Baby Boomer's Rosh Hashanah
In the midst of all this school hustle and bustle came another beginning—Rosh Hashanah.
How Heartbreak Helps Us Heal on Rosh Hashanah
Remember the profound and pivotal moments in your life?
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