Skip to main content

What is the connection between pomegranates and the Jewish New Year?




Another year and another Jewish New Year, or rather Rosh haShana (the head of the year).
And again we see pomegranates ALL over the place! I mean like...EveryWhere!
  • There are pomegranates on the greeting cards we send each other for Rosh haShana
  • There are heaps of pomegranates in the supermarkets
  • There are pomegranate recipes in every single newspaper and magazine
  • There are pomegranates, real and decorative ones, on the table during the Rosh haShana meals. As a matter of fact, pomegranate seeds are one of food stuffs that have a special blessing.
  • The juice guys on the street corners are selling more pomegranate juice than ever
  • The are even pomegranates growing like crazy all over Israel. They are practically 'dripping' from their trees.

So what is the story with all these pomegranates all over the place?
Well, the story is two-fold:
1. Jews eat pomegranates during Rosh haShana to a sign that people's good deeds should be as plentiful as the  seeds of a pomegranate.
 
There are 613 good deeds that Jews should do and legend has it that this is the exact number of pomegranate seeds found in a pomegranate. 


And no, I have not counted all the seeds in one pomegranate.But I would like hear from you if you have! I am really curious to know if this is really true :)

Trees are filled with pomegranates during Rosh Hashana in Israel.
2. Pomegranates are now in season in Israel. And it is pretty obvious that the fruit that are in season will be in the supermarkets and growing in the trees and will be eaten with relish and all that.

But let's put point 1 and point 2 together and think a bit about it.... The pomegranates are in season in Israel at the exact time period when Rosh haShana is celebrated and the Jewish people has a special prayer for them.

There are many such connections between Judaism and the land of Israel, but I particularly like this one. Maybe it is because the pomegranate seeds are so beautiful and jewel-like or because they grow so plentiful on their trees. 

But it is probably because they are sweet and healthy and and a beautiful symbol for the hope of a wonderful Rosh haShana.

Happy 5774 everyone!





Comments

Popular posts from this blog

When the almond trees flower

We are right at the entrance of spring now in Israel. Luckily we had a lot of rain this winter and everywhere is clean and green.
We are already enjoying the spring flowers but one cannot talk (okay write..☺) about spring flowers without mentioning almond blossoms.


The wild mustard flowers of Israel

The wild mustard is growing yellow and everywhere in Israel at the moment. But not the kind of mustard that you eat with ketchup on your hotdog! Wild mustard as in wild mustard plants! :)

I am talking about Sinapsis Arvensis, a tiny yellow flower that grows in masses in fields, along road sides and abandoned building sites. Up close the wild mustard flower does not look like much - a bit on the puny side actually. But just come across a field filled with mustard flowers and you will be enchanted - just as I am every spring.

The Jerusalem Pine of Israel - a hate/love story

I have always taken offense at the Jerusalem pine trees that one sees dotted all over the landscape here in Israel.
They are just too scraggy, skinny and needle-ly and let's be honest: UGLY. I mean just look at it...