Jews in Charlotte and around the world continued their celebration of Rosh Hashanah – the Jewish New Year – on Thursday by gathering in synagogues for prayer, blowing the shofar, or ram’s horn, and wishing each other “Shana Tova” – the Hebrew greeting to have a “Good Year.”
Also called the birthday of the world, this Rosh Hashanah, which began at sundown Wednesday, ushers in year 5778 on the Jewish calendar and marks the start of the High Holy Days. These 10 Days of Awe – a period of repentance and introspection – will culminate with Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, which starts at sundown Sept. 29.
Jews believe that on Rosh Hashanah, God writes names into a metaphoric Book of Life for the coming year. On Yom Kippur, God seals the Book of Life. God's judgment is final, but can be influenced by repentance, prayer and acts of kindness.