Happy Rosh Hashanah! Oct. 2 marked the beginning of the Jewish New Year, and Jewish people around the world will be celebrating the holiday for the next two days. Find out more about Rosh Hashanah right here!
1. Rosh Hashanah is hebrew for “beginning/head of the year.”
Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish New Year, hence the hebrew name. While it may seem a little strange that some people are celebrating the beginning of a new year in October, the holiday marks the anniversary of the creation of the world (yes, like Adam and Eve).
2. It’s not the same weekend every year.
This year, Rosh Hashanah takes place from sunset on Oct. 2 until nightfall on Oct. 4, but it varies every year. It’s dependent on the first day of Tishrei, the first month of the civil year, which is based on the Gregorian Calendar and usually occurs in September or October.
3. Those who celebrate the holiday will be eating a lot of apples dipped in honey for two days.
Part of the Rosh Hashanah customs is to eat symbolic foods like apples with honey, representing a “sweet new year.” Challah bread, honey bread, and fish are also a major part of the celebration. Along with the food, there are customs like sounding the shofar (a hollow ram’s horn), to “raise a noise” during the holiday as prescribed in the Hebrew Bible. In fact, the biblical name for Rosh Hashanah is Yom Teruah, which translates to “day of shouting/blasting.”
4. The proper greeting for Rosh Hashanah is “Shana Tovah.”
Just like people say “Happy New Year” on January 1, Jewish friends greet each other with “Shana Tovah,” which loosely means the same thing. If you’re really feeling fancy, you can say “L’Shana Tovah u’Metukah,” which wishes someone a “good and sweet new year.”
5. It’s also considered Judgment Day.
Rosh Hashanah is the start of the Ten Days of Awe, during which Jewish people reflect on the previous year and the actions they’ve taken. In Jewish tradition, God is said to write the fate of everyone who celebrates Rosh Hashanah either in the Book of Life or Book of Death, with the verdict being revealed on Yom Kippur nine days after the start of Rosh Hashanah.
HollywoodLifers, are you celebrating Rosh Hashanah? What’s your favorite part about it? Tell us below!