A pidyon haben, or “redemption of the firstborn son,” is a ceremony wherein the father of a firstborn male redeems his son by giving a kohen (a priestly descendant of Aaron) five silver coins, thirty days after the baby’s birth. -chabad.org
For the exact reasons why we do this, please refer to the following link: http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/928156/jewish/What-Why.htm
It’s 30 days after the birth of my little great nephew. He was her first, born naturally so a pidyon haben could be celebrated. It’s a special ceremony as not everyone can do it. No pidjon will be held if the child has been born by cesarean, if she is a girl or if the father is a Kohen. It was a long while since we had a pidjon haben in the family so it’s a special occasion. We all come dressed in our finery and wish each other mazel tov.
The baby is slumbering peacefully, looking regal in an all-white outfit. He is placed on a silver tray to show our love for this mitzvah (commandment) and will be bedecked with jewelry. Everyone eagerly gives a piece.
He is being carried to the men’s side and the ceremony begins. The exchange between the father and the kohen follows. The father “redeems” his firstborn son by exchanging the equivalent of 5 silver coins with the Kohen, a blessing is recited and the baby is brought back to his mother.
We all sit down to a festive meal. It’s customary to include meat and wine. I’m enjoying a moment of relaxation in the midst of the hectic Passover preparations.
My son was asked to play on his keyboard and the background music adds a lot to the event. I’m grateful to have been a part of this most beautiful tradition of ours.
As it’s 30 minutes before sabbath, I can only write extremely briefly about this holiday.
The Holiday which celebrates the new beginning of the fruit-bearing cycle begins tonight. It’s the 15th of the Jewish month of Shevat. It’s our custom to celebrate it by eating a variety of fruits, mainly those not eaten all year.
Hopefully next year a longer explanation 🙂
It’s the 8th night of Hannukah. It’s written in our holy books that on the last night, you can ask G-d for anything you need. It’s an auspicious time for prayer and prayer requests. I am sitting by the menorah, together with my husband and children.
The candles are flickering slightly and as my husband sings the Psalms I gaze deeply into the holy flames, letting my mind wander. I have lots to pray for. I think of my dear son, who has such difficulty controlling his impulses, some of them downright harmful. One of his impulses got him kicked out of yeshivah. I’m praying for him to understand the gravity of his impulse and what his future could be if he doesn’t learn how to control it. I’m asking G-d to please help the psychiatrist find good meds to help him overcome his obsessions/compulsions and not to have to go through the same dance we had while trying to find the right meds for his ADD. (which we still haven’t).
Tears are starting to flow as I beseech G-d to find him the right Yeshivah which will accept him as he is and will be willing to help him as he confronts and works through his issues. My heart cannot accept that I will have to send him away from home that young but I can only hope that G-d made all this happen so that he could end up in the Yeshivah that will be best for him. I pray that G-d gives me the strength to have faith that this is all for the best and that we can see it sooner rather than later.
I hear my husband’s voice starting to shake. My heart goes out to him, too. This is very hard on him, much harder than it’s for me. A father has high hopes for his son. All he wants is to see him successful and happy. His heart breaks seeing his son at home all day. I can hear the prayer in his voice, no doubt praying the same as me.
The Chanukah candles are special, the whole holiday of Chanukah is special. We celebrate the miracle that’s happened many years ago. We can only hope that our prayers by the candles will go straight to heaven and that we may merit our own personal salvation as well.
Happy last day of Chanukah!
Tonight is the Jewish New Year. Wishing all of us a Happy New Year, a year filled with love, light, health, happiness, riches and Nachas (If you follow this page, you should know what it means 😉
This year was tough on many levels. Personally, we had my little nephew diagnosed and suffer so much, I’m praying for health for him. Globally, we have had much bad news too. They year ahead is scary…The world is changing and not for the better 😦
But we have to stay optimistic. We have to keep believing that things will be good. We will continue to celebrate the good in our lives. This past year was not all bad. We celebrated the Bar Mitzvah of our one and only son, it was a beautiful affair we will long remember. There were good times too, family wise, community wise and global wise..
So here is to a Happy, healthy New year! Thanks for sticking with me and hopefully you’ll all stick around for a long time 🙂
Every Thursday I share an interesting tidbit that you might not have known about Ultra Orthodox Judaism on my FB page. Since not everyone follows me on there, I thought I’ll start sharing them here too! Remember that there are many kinds of Jews and I belong to the strictest sect (Hasidic) so my experience is not everybody else’s experience. 🙂
Foodwise: We eat only Kosher which is not easy sometimes: It’s MUCH more expensive, I cannot travel everywhere I want, either I am taking all my food along or I need a place where Kosher food is available. Most non Jews don’t understand why we need big freezers when we go on vacation 😛 (we bring lots of pre-cooked food)
There are levels of Kosher and we are the strictest. We don’t eat all Kosher certifications., just the ones we trust.
We also don’t mix milk and meat. If we eat meat, we wait a certain amount of hours to eat milky. (We wait 6 hours, some wait less). For the opposite, we wait 30 min. Our kitchens have 2 sinks and 2 counters, one for milky and one for meat. Everything is separated; cutlery, tablecloths and all.
For more #ThursdayTidbits check my FB page: Orthodox Sunflower
I shared this on my FB page bc this is me! If you are not Jewish, do your thing. If you’re Jewish, do your thing too. I’ll leave the judging up to G-d! Just be kind.
I don’t think I can post about random things after hearing about the attacks in Paris. We heard snippets and conflicting reports on Sabbath but since we cannot check the news it’s only tonight that I read and heard about the magnitude of it all.
I went on Facebook. I had friends unfriending their friends because of the things they posted against refugees, against Muslims and people spouting their opinions left and right. I do not participate. I have so much to say but what good will it do? No one listens anyway. Everyone’s opinion depends on where they come from. I’m horrified by the attacks and the losses of life. Any loss of life is tragic (besides the terrorists of course). Continue reading My thoughts on Paris Day 14 #NaBloPoMo