September 18, 2009, - 1:19 pm

Happy New Year

By Debbie Schlussel

Tonight, at sundown, Rosh HaShanah–the Jewish New Year–begins.  One of the two most important Jewish holidays (the other is Yom Kippur), it marks the beginning of the Jewish “Ten Days of Repentance,” during which we repent for our sins and pray for a good new year. We believe that on Rosh HaShanah, G-d inscribes our fate for the year, and that at the end of Yom Kippur, that fate is sealed.


On the holiday, we traditionally eat apples with honey (and other items with honey) to signify that we seek a new year that is as sweet as that uber-sweet combination. (My favorite apples, BTW, are McIntosh.)  The holiday ends at nightfall on Sunday Night.  During two days of intense prayer at synagogue, we hear the blowing of a ram’s horn (called a “shofar”), which makes several different kinds of sounds we are required to hear.

A little bit more about the Jewish New Year excerpted from my post on this in a previous year. My prayers will be the same as they were then (with a few added extras, now that we are stuck in the Obama era):

Man Blowing Sounds Out of the Shofar

On Rosh HaShanah, a two day holiday, we pray in synagogue for a good new year of peace, health, and prosperity for ourselves, our people, and the safety of our country, the USA, which has brought us such great opportunity to live in peace and freedom. We also pray for peace in Israel, America’s most loyal ally and the only democracy in the Middle East, too. Unlike in many of America’s (and the world’s) mosques–where hatred of America, Christians, and Jews is the order of the day in sermons, prayers, the Koran, and the Hadiths–there isn’t a single prayer we have that mentions Islam or Muslims or harm to anyone.

Given the recent escalation in Islamic intolerance and violence, we also hope that, while we are praying and not bothering anyone, our synagogues are secure from all of those “lone,” “mentally disturbed,” “non-terror related” Muslims who attack Jewish institutions, when they know there will be a large gathering of Jews. We know that in this country–where after 9/11 the Justice Dept. started a special program devoted only to Justice for Muslims and Arabs–authorities aren’t really paying as much attention to the safety and civil rights of Christians and Jews [as they are to the “real” victims of 9/11 (the “Religion of Peace” brotherhood)].

I will be praying that our government is restored to people in touch with the real world, that the PC forces running the Depts. of Justice and Homeland Security, the FBI and ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) will be replaced with common-sense law enforcement officials who care about justice, safety, and security of America, who care about protecting our borders and stopping the malefactors already inside the gate. I’ll be praying for the end to PC movies and TV shows painting Jews and Christians as the villains and extremist Muslims who support terrorism as kind, nice victims of prejudice. Those are just some of the things I’ll be praying for.

On Rosh HaShanah, we also hear hundreds of noises blown from a ram’s horn known as a shofar (can be the horn of certain other animals, too). The shofar is one of the most prominent symbols in Judaism. It’s used like a trumpet, takes a special skill to use, and is the horn that was blown by Israeli Chief Rabbi Shlomo Goren when the Western Wall in Jerusalem was liberated from Islamists in 1967. Its sounds symbolize alarm and justice, among many other things.

Oh, and I’ll also be praying that Barack Obama’s incompetence and aims are weakened and that Republicans find compelling, strong leadership to challenge him and his disastrous policies, every step of the way. That’s a necessity for America as we know it to survive.

To all of my Jewish readers and friends, Shanah Tovah u’Metukah KeTapuach B’Dvash–May You Have a Good New Year, As Sweet as an Apple with Honey.

Thanks to all of my readers who sent me e-mails and i- and e-cards wishing me a Happy New Year.  Right Back at Ya!

I hope you have a happy and healthy new year.

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20 Responses

Shana Tova to Debbie and family!
with gratitude and best wishes for the new year

crazycatkid on September 18, 2009 at 1:24 pm

Shana Tova, Debbie. ??? ????

Anonymous Twit on September 18, 2009 at 1:47 pm

The Hebrew characters in my greeting got automatically converted to question marks in my earlier post! Sorry about that.

Anonymous Twit on September 18, 2009 at 1:49 pm

My favorite apples are cortlands. They should be ready to pick here in West Central Wisconsin anytime now.

Rick on September 18, 2009 at 2:20 pm

L’shana tova tikutayvu. Have a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year, with more scoops than Baskin Robbins.


chsw on September 18, 2009 at 2:39 pm

From a fierce Christian Zionist, I wish you a very Happy New Year Debbie, to you and your family. I pray for God’s peace and safety for Israel and to all the Jews around the world.

Ileana on September 18, 2009 at 5:01 pm

Shanah Tovah u’Metukah KeTapuach B’Dvash–May You Have a Good New Year, As Sweet as an Apple with Honey.

right back at you too, Debbie. We all love you!! (all those who matter!!)

BB on September 18, 2009 at 5:04 pm

Happy Rosh Hashanah Debbie, may you and your family enjoy the year of 5770! good wishes!

Matthew on September 18, 2009 at 5:27 pm

Gala apples, baby! and Granny Smiths (that have sat a while so they mellow out a bit).

verbatim on September 18, 2009 at 5:34 pm

Happy Rosh Hashannah, Debbie.

jlp4221 on September 18, 2009 at 5:55 pm

Shanah Tovah, Debbie!

Mohammed the Teddy-Bear on September 18, 2009 at 7:26 pm

Happy Year 5770 Debbie! Best wishes for the New Year. Thanks for working so hard to keep us aware and informed every year.

Bonzer Wolf on September 18, 2009 at 9:28 pm

L’Shanah Tovah Debbie!

mewize on September 19, 2009 at 12:50 am


L’shana tova tikutayvu, and for SOOOOO many years to come to the Jewish people, and NOT for the ones who deny their existence and attack them on hourly basis.

Layla tova.

Daniel. on September 19, 2009 at 1:40 am

And this about their sacrifices.

And this about others willing to sacrifice for them. BTW, Druze are nNOT Muslims.

Daniel. on September 19, 2009 at 1:58 am

And this about their sacrifices.

And this about others willing to sacrifice for them. BTW, Druze are nNOT Muslims.

That is a small example.




Daniel. on September 19, 2009 at 2:12 am

Happy New Year, Debbie. I made a few observations for you over the weekend.

1) Security people patted down my tallis bag both days. I think in my case they just wanted to see if I was smuggling in a cell phone (nope).

2) I’m pretty sure I saw Blanket Jackson on Shabbat, wearing the same suit as at MJ’s wake, but I turned around and he vanished

3) It was hard to see with the mechitzah, but it looked like there was some decent booty this year. I also think the mechitzah was too high and really disrupted the serious business at hand.

4) I don’t like the married womens’ wigs, which make the women look really odd. It just seems like a really off key attempt to bypass modesty rules.

A1 on September 20, 2009 at 8:11 pm

I like MacIntosh apples myself, but have you ever had a Winesap? a Granny Smith? A (baked) Rome Beauty?

Miranda Rose Smith on September 21, 2009 at 5:35 am

Happy New Year Debbie to you and yours – keep up the great work!!!!

BIG IRISH on September 21, 2009 at 9:42 pm

May I use the picture of the man blowing the shofar in a Fall Festivals Siddur? If so, is it possible to obtain a high resolution copy, suitable for publishing?


Margalit on August 31, 2010 at 2:17 pm

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