September 04, 2013

Welcoming a New Jewish Year and New Opportunities.

Tonight, once again, the Jewish People will celebrate the start of a new calendar year. According to Jewish tradition, tonight marks the 5,774th anniversary of the creation of the world. More specifically, it is said to be the birthday of the first people, Adam and Eve.

Philosophically, this is an important distinction in that the creation of mankind, not trees and animals, saw the creation of free will on Earth. Only man can truly analyze and choose his path in life. We can choose to believe in the divine or deny its existence. We can choose to compromise with our fellow man or quarrel with him. We can choose to be make the most of life or not make anything of it. Regardless of what happened last year, Rosh Hashanah represents an opportunity for each of us to start fresh and use our free will to make better decisions for the next year.

A tradition for many at tonight’s meal is to eat the head of a fish with the hopes that we will “be as the head and not the tail;” to be leaders and thinkers, not followers. This coming year, may we “be as the head and not the tail,” making good and positive choices for ourselves, our families and our communities. We hope it is a sweet year for all of you. Shana Tova.