The High Holidays are nuts!

I thought I’d heard of all the major High Holiday customs–fish heads or goat heads on the table, kaparot, and trying not to sleep during the holidays–but The Jew & The Carrot just introduced me to a new one: no nuts during the Ten Days of Repentance.

There are those who definitely avoid nuts of all shapes and sizes during these ten days. For some there is a deep symbolic meaning, as the Hebrew word egoz has a numeric value 9 (when you add up the value of each letter) that is equal to that of the Hebrew word of sin (het) and as sin should be avoided so too should nuts.
I don’t personally find this to be the most persuasive argument against nuts, as I suspect that if I looked long and hard I might be able to find other foods whose value was similarly negatively associated. 0_0_FL_mashuga_nuts2.jpgBut there is another school of thought that suggests that nuts should be avoided in this particular season because they can have a negative effect on our ability to sing.  (Their husks and meats have a tendency to get caught in or dry up throats and so they are to be avoided in this season when our need to raise our voices to God is so essential.)

Looking into this matter, I came across some wonderful rabbinic teachings about nuts.  More…

Really?  No nuts??  Not even Meshuga Nuts?

Discover More

December Holiday Tips for Interfaith Parents

Interfaith families struggle to be true to the religions of both parents during the winter holiday season.

Yom Kippur All Year Long

The proper observance of Yom Kippur, including repentance and introspection, should bring us nearer to God all year long.

Bal Tashchit: The Torah Prohibits Wasteful Destruction

Fruit trees cannot be destroyed in war, and the Jewish legal tradition takes this to be a paradigm for any act of despoliation.