Category Archives: 1 – Rosh Chodesh

1 – The Jewish Month

HaKadosh Baruch Hu created luminaries – the sun and the moon – and placed them in the heavens. They are the means by which we establish the order of time. The sun shines during the day, the moon at night. … Continue reading

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2 – The Authority to Fix the Months was Entrusted to Israel

A new month does not automatically begin when the moon reappears. Rather, the judges of the Beit Din sanctify the month, as it says, “This month shall be for you” (Shemot, 12:2). HaShem showed Moshe Rabbeinu the configuration of the … Continue reading

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3 – The History of the Sanctification of the Moon

As a result of Roman persecution, the Jewish settlement in the Holy Land dwindled during the Talmudic period, while the larger community of Jews became ensconsed in Babylonia advanced in all areas. Nonetheless, the Sages of Eretz Yisrael retained the … Continue reading

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4 – Rosh Chodesh – One Day or Two?

When a month is incomplete (29 days), the following Rosh Chodesh is one day. When it is full (30 days), the following Rosh Chodesh lasts two days, the first day being the thirtieth of the previous month, and the second … Continue reading

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5 – The Status of Rosh Chodesh in the Torah

The Torah lists Rosh Chodesh together with all the other holidays on which we offer additional sacrifices (Musafim) in honor of the day’s sanctity. Chazal derive from a verse in Eichah(1:15) that Rosh Chodesh is also called mo’ed (an appointed … Continue reading

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6 – Festive Meals on Rosh Chodesh and the Prohibition to Fast or Grieve

Rosh Chodesh is among the holidays on which it is appropriate to rejoice. However, there is no explicit commandment to rejoice on Rosh Chodesh by partaking in festive meals. While it is meritorious to have special meals on the day, … Continue reading

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7 – The Custom of Women Refraining from Work on Rosh Chodesh

It is permissible to do work on Rosh Chodesh. Ideally, though, one should not work on Rosh Chodesh, similar to the law regarding Chol HaMo’ed. The holier the day, the more it is designated for spiritual endeavors, and the more … Continue reading

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8 – Shabbat Mevarchim (Blessing the New Month)

On the Shabbat before Rosh Chodesh, the custom is to announce the day or days on which the new month will fall, and to pray that “HaKadosh Baruch Hu renew it for us and all of Israel for goodness and … Continue reading

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9 – A Time of Atonement and Yom Kippur Katan

Rosh Chodesh is a time of atonement, as we say in the Musaf prayer, “A time of atonement for all [the Jewish people’s] offspring.” In addition, when the Temple stood, a he-goat would be sacrificed as a sin offering. In … Continue reading

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10 – Ya’aleh VeYavo in Shemoneh Esrei

The unique nature of Rosh Chodesh finds expression in our prayers. After all, Chazal instituted our prayers in place of the sacrifices, and the Torah commands us to offer a musaf sacrifice on Rosh Chodesh. Therefore, the Rabbis prescribed that … Continue reading

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