Rosh Hashana, the Jewish new year’s celebration, began last night at sunset as Jewish congregations around the world listened to the siren of the shofar, the traditional horn.
“Rosh Hashana is the day on which we celebrate the birthday of the world,” said Rabbi David Vorspan, founding Rabbi of congregation Shir Ami in Encino. “It is a time in which we are able to enjoy all that the world has presented to us. It is a day of joy, happiness and sweetness.”
Rosh Hashana traditions include the customary blowing of the shofar at synagogues around the world, which represents the opening of the sky for each individual’s atonement, and leads to the next Jewish holiday, Yom Kippur, the day of atonement.
“My favorite part of Rosh Hashana is that feeling of a new beginning,” said Tomer Lipski, Pierce College student. “I get to see the past and the future, pick up my head, look at the big picture and think about life and the goals in the future.”
It is also customary to have festive meals to celebrate the holiday. Traditional Rosh Hashana food includes apples in honey to wish oneself a sweet year, and seeds of a pomegranate that represent a desire for the year to be as fertile as the countless seeds.
Rosh Hashana will end on Friday at sunset.