(CNN) – Here is a look at the Jewish holiday Rosh Hashanah, a celebration of the new year.
September 29, 2019 – Rosh Hashanah begins at sundown.
September 9, 2018 – Rosh Hashanah began at sundown.
Facts:Rosh Hashanah means “head of the year” in Hebrew. It is a time for reflection and repentance.
It is referred to as the “day of judgment.”
According to the Talmud, the world was created on the first day of Tishrei, the seventh month of the Jewish calendar.
The holiday is celebrated on the first and second days of Tishrei, which generally corresponds to September or October on the Gregorian calendar.
Rosh Hashanah begins the High Holy Days or Ten Days of Penitence, which end with Yom Kippur.
One of the most significant rituals during Rosh Hashanah is the blowing of the Shofar, or ram’s horn. It is used as a call to repentance during the High Holy Days.
During this time, Jewish people attend synagogue services and refrain from working.
Another popular practice is to eat apples dipped in honey, symbolizing the hope for a sweet year to come. Also, challah bread is baked in round loaves instead of braided loaves. The bread is dipped in honey instead of salt.
Pomegranates are eaten because the seeds are symbolic of the many commandments in the Torah that Jews must fulfill.
Another popular ritual is to walk to a river or stream and recite special prayers of penitence. Afterward, one throws breadcrumbs in the river, to symbolically cast away sins.