Tashlikh (Tashlich) Enhanced

A way to infuse this Rosh Hashanah ritual with extra meaning.

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-After some introductory words, give participants a brief overview of what you have planned for the evening. If the group is small enough, you may want to have everyone introduce herself using her matrilineage (name, bat/daughter of mother's name, bat/daughter of grandmother's name, etc). Or you can have everyone answer an opening question related to teshuvah (return/repentance), Tashlikh, or Elul, such as, "What does the word teshuvah, "turning," mean to you?" or "How have you spent this month of preparation for the High Holidays?

Meditation

Before participants enter into their individual casting, provide a space for them to reflect on the past year and focus on both things that they are ready to cast off and things that they will hold on to. For those participants who have not already begun this internal work during the month of Elul, this section of the program will offer a meaningful way of preparing both for the ritual and for the High Holidays.

Partner Sharing

Have the group break up into pairs and share something about the past year. One idea might be to ask each pair of participants to share with one another something about themselves which they would like to cast away in the coming year, as well as something they would like to keep. Another idea might be to ask what changes each partner in the pair plans to make in the coming year and what holds them back from making those changes.

Individual Casting (Personal Lives)

Give individuals time to cast their bread into the body of water. Lead a niggun during this time and allow people to spend a moment thinking, meditating, or praying as they perform the ritual. You can provide bread, bread crumbs, or rose petals for this piece of the program. You can choose to have participants cast in silence or have the song leader play a niggunor instrumental piece in the background. Allow a fair amount of time for this section. Afterwards, begin to gather participants back into the main circle with singing and/or dancing that starts slowly and builds the energy of the group.

You might want to think about supplying participants with a poem or piece of liturgy to say at the water if they choose. Explain before people break into pairs that these readings for individual casting can be found on the song sheet, and if necessary (if they are in Hebrew or if they are sung), go over them as a group.

Hatarat Nedarim Ceremony (Annulment of Vows)

Materials:

-water soluble pens

-paper

-challah

-torch candles

-heavy duty paper

-shofar

Order:

-Niggun (use Hashiveinu or other High Holiday niggun)

  Kol Nidre is a community Hatarat Nedarim, an annulment of vows, to release us from vows to God that we are unable to fulfill. Since the time of the Bible, Jews have had the concept of an oath or neder, a binding statement of what one has committed to do. There is a ceremony to release one from such a vow, called Hatarat Nedarim. This is the concept this segment of the ritual will explore.

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