The Roaming Pomegranate

There’s an old joke that’s been around for years (even made into a song at one point) that says that Jewish holidays are usually based on three things:

  1. They tried to kill us.
  2. We survived.
  3. Let’s eat.

Food does seem to be central to any kind of celebration.  There are traditional dishes for almost any occasion.  Rosh HaShana is no exception.  Most of the customary food for the new year in the Jewish calendar is sweet, nothing bitter, in order to “ensure” a sweet new year.  (Partner’s father even used to forbid eating the gefilte fish with horseradish on Rosh HaShana, as it was too bitter.)

We dip apples in honey.

We dip challah (sweet egg-bread) in honey.  The challah for the new year is not braided as it usually is for Shabbat and other holidays, but spiraled or round, symbolizing the continuity of Creation, and raisins are often added.

We eat honey cake.  (Well, most do, nobody in our household really likes honey cake that much, so we don’t bother.)

We eat a “new fruit”,  a fruit that has recently come into season but that we have not yet had the opportunity to eat, saying a blessing thanking God for keeping us alive and bringing us to this season.  A pomegranate is often used as this new fruit. In the Bible, the Land of Israel is praised for its pomegranates. It is also said that this fruit contains 613 seeds just as there are 613 mitzvot/commandments. I’ve never actually checked this out by cutting open a pomegranate and literally counting the seeds.  I really wonder who did to make the above claim, or why, or how they even thought of it. But I can attest to the fact that there sure are a lot of tangy-sweet seeds in those things.  Another reason given for blessing and eating pomegranates on Rosh HaShana is that we wish that our good deeds in the coming year will be as plentiful as the seeds of the pomegranate.

So.  At last night’s dinner we dipped our challah

new year challah 75

into honey along with the apples.

sweet new year 75

 

We saved our pomegranate for dessert – and then ate so much good food that there was no room for dessert.  Oops.  It will be eaten at tonight’s dinner instead.

So I took our pomegranate and started placing it around the house to symbolize a sweet and plentiful new year in many ways.

Catbeast was intrigued.

sny 75 cat

Dogbeast was a little wary of it.

sny 75 dog

And the pomegranate was on the move!

For a sweet year with plenty of work:

sny 75 work

For a sweet year with plenty of reading:

sny 75 books

For a sweet year with plenty of knitting:

sny 75 knitting

For a sweet year with plenty of healthy and tasty food:

sny 75 cooking

For a sweet year with plenty of music:

sny 75 music

For a sweet year with plenty of friends and laughter:

sny 75 friends

For a sweet year with plenty of travel:

sny 75 travel

For a sweet year with plenty of exercise:

sny 75 exercise

 

For a sweet year with plenty of rest and serenity:

sny 75 rest

And for a sweet new year of peace:

sny 75 peace

L’shana tova, y’all.

 

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2 Responses to “The Roaming Pomegranate”

  1. knitredchocolatebookcat Says:

    Love this post to bits.

  2. feelgoodknitting Says:

    Great post – love the traveling pomegranate!

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