The Plethora of Things to Cast Off

Tashlich is a Jewish custom in which we symbolically cast away our sins into a moving body of water. It is usually performed the first day of Rosh Hashanah in preparation for Yom Kippur. Tashlich is based on a verse “And you will cast all your sins into the depths of the sea.” from Micha, 7:19.

Looking for an alternative to the traditional prayer I came across this poem At the Water’s Edge: A Reading for Tashlikh by Elizabeth Tragash and this ceremony by Susie Kessler and Janice Rous. Instead of concentrating on the traditional idea of sins, these women reframe tashlich to encourage us to release anything we are holding on to that is obsolete and no longer serve us in the same way that trees release their foliage in this change of season.

Which brings me to a powerful video, Fall, by Shirin Neshat, an artist that marks the changing seasons by addressing the famine in Somalia.

For this tashlich let’s stretch ourselves to go beyond our personal sins and release any undercurrent of powerlessness so that we may sail into an authentic transformation for this new year.

Published by SilkQuilt

Pittsburgh-based fiber artist, Louise Silk, creates art that combines aesthetics and functionality with meaning and memories. From the influence of a 1972 MS Magazine article to the current SILKDENIM label, her quilt experiences culminate in a display of her particular capacity to use her patchwork skills to piece together just about anything into an aesthetic meaningful whole.

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