Thursday, September 29, 2011

Rosh Hashanah

I was walking a thin line as we celebrated some of the Rosh Hashanah traditions, in keeping with the cultural spirit of our Torah unit. Zoo Boy really wanted to do a REAL Rosh Hashanah celebration, with the Hebrew readings and a visit to a Temple and the whole nine yards. (He's just SUCH the right age for this sort of embracing of the cultures.) J, on the other hand, was highly opposed to celebrating it at all -- he felt that it was disrespectful for us to observe a religious holiday that was not our own. (And that's totally normal for his developmental place as well.) So I settled on sampling the foods and listening to some recorded prayers and readings in Hebrew, but did not go any deeper than that. Zoo Boy was disappointed we didn't "do more" to celebrate. J was OK with the compromise, and we discussed how there are some holidays that people celebrate because they believe in the religion behind them, and some that they celebrate because they are just part of their family traditions. (I used Yule and Christmas as examples of each for our family -- we know plenty of families who celebrate the Winter Solstice who are not Pagan, and we certainly enjoy the Christmas traditions ourselves without believing in the nativity story as a truth.)

It was a nice little celebration, not as deep as I would have liked to delve into it, but the best I could do and still respect what my kids needed from it.


dongdong said...

wow, those buns looks absolutely amazing!

Karen said...

I'm with J about celebrating other people's religious holidays. I have people tell me all the time I should just celebrate Christmas and just not get it when I tell them why I won't.

I will more often than not celebrate someone else's holiday WITH them if I am invited to participate.I see that as sharing a friend's celebrations, honoring their customs as they honor me by inviting my participation. Holding my own celebration of that holiday, or worse yet, secularizing it, is a totally different thing and as J says, feels quite disrespectful for me.

I'm fine with doing my own solstice celebrations because pretty much all cultures living where the solstices could be noticed marked them in some way.