Rosh Hashanah

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(Hebrew: / Spelling: Rosh Hashana, Rosh Hashanah / Other Names: Yom Zicaron, Day of Remembrance, Yom Tiruah, Day of Trumpeting)

New Years day on the Jewish Calendar. On Rosh Hashana all judged in front of Hashem and their fate is decided for the upcoming year.


Four Rosh Hashana's

Although the term Rosh Hashana is generally used to refers to the Jewish New Year's that falls out on the first of Tishrei the Mishanh list four different Rosh Hashana's or beginning days. On the first day of Tishray it is Rosh Hashanah for the Years, Shmitah, Yovlim, Planting and Vegetables.

Years - It is the first day of the Jewish Calender and is used for dating documents. Additionally the human race is judged on this Rosh Hashana for the upcoming year.

Shmitos and Yovlim - Once Rosh Hashana comes in it becomes forbidden to plow the land Mdioraysa on every seventh and fiftieth year of the Shmitah cycle.

Planting - In reference to the three years a tree needs to get out of its Urlah status, Rosh Hashana is considered the starting point. Even if a tree was planted 45 days earlier during the month of Av, when Rosh Hashanah comes around it is already considered the second year.

Vegetables - It is forbidden to give Masser from vegetables that grew in one year from vegetables that grew in a previous or later year. Rosh Hashanah is the determining point that establishes the year for vegetable Masser. Therefore one would not be able to give Masser from vegetables that were harvested on Erev Rosh Hashana from vegetables that were harvested the day after Rosh Hashanah.

Day of Judgment

Rosh Hashana is a day of Remembrance in front of Hashem. On this day He remembers all creations and judges them; who will live, who will die, who will become rich and who will become poor etc. Hashem looks over the hearts of all creations all in one glance but at the same time perceives each creation individually.

Aside from individuals, nations are also judged as a whole on Rosh Hashanah; which land will have prosperity, which land will have famine, which land will have war and which land will have peace.

The Three Books

On Rosh Hashana, three books are opened in the heavenly court. Completely Righteous people are written in the Book of Life. Completely Evil are sealed for death. Everyone else in between have their final judgment delayed until Yom Kippor so they have a longer chance to repent.

No Hallel

Although Rosh Hashana is considered a holiday, the Hallel is not recited. Due to the tremendous awe and trepidation of this day when people are judged for life and death, it is not appropriate to sing the Hallel.

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