Wednesday, October 27, 2021

"Kapparot"

 

Occasionally, I get hurt by someone's behavior and feel helpless and frustrated; there's nothing I could do about it to ease my anger. The 'kapparot' ritual has given me some idea, but I haven't put it into practice yet , probably never will.

Kapparot (plural of kappara - atonement) in Judaism is a ritual performed on the eve of Yom Kippur ( the Atonement Day), by which the sins of a person  are symbolically transferred to a fowl (usually a hen - for a woman, a rooster for a man).

The fowl is passed over one's head three times, and there's a prayer to be said; in English it sounds like that: "this is my exchange, this is my substitute, this is my atonement. This rooster (hen) will go to its death, while I will enter and proceed to a good, long life and to peace".

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The ritual is considered by many as  cruel, and rightly so. Why transfer our sins to the fowl? what has it done to us? Why does it deserve this kind of treatment? because it's about to be slaughtered to provide  meat  for our meals?(The alternative proposed is to use money instead, which will then be given to charity).

Like many others, I'm against this ritual and against slaughtering animals (although, I admit , I eat meat now and then, out of habit and of fear the body might face shortage of some vital nutrient).

Now, what about the idea I got from this ritual?  I could mention three times the name of the person who has done me wrong , and say the prayer by which my sins will be transferred to him/her (omitting, of course, the death part in the prayer. I  wish no one to die ). Let him/her carry and deal with this burden, as revenge for  misbehavior towards me.  It may sound stupid and or childish, but talking or writing about this possibility makes me already feel a little better:)


web pictures

 

59 comments:

  1. I like your idea, it spares the fowl!

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    1. You mean the idea with the money. It's not mine, but it definitely spares the fowl.

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  2. I would think the ritual, with the chicken, would be cathartic. You could release your negative emotions this way. Some people write them down and burn them, too.

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    1. 'cathartic' - that's a strong word for strong feelings.
      I like the idea of writing down negative emotions, and then burn the piece of paper.

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  3. I never had any problem forgiving myself or other family members and friends.. most of the issues were fairly minor, in the overall scheme of things. But five years ago a relative asked my beloved mother's doctor "to euthanase her quickly and painlessly" so that the medical resources could be given to more deserving younger people. Despite guarding mum's rooms, my beautiful mother died four weeks later, but I will never know who or what killed her.

    This relative is the only one I have ever wished death on.

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    1. How terrible!
      I can certainly understand your hatred for that relative who has dared to interfere asking for your mother's life to be ended.

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  4. Each to his or her own regarding the rooster, if it makes the person/s feel improved let them do it. I wouldn't.
    I don't seem to get unnerved/cross by or with anyone and just take things with a gain of salt, guess I'm lucky.

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    1. I'm for the money option, if one insists on the ritual, and feels it helps.
      Lucky you for having such an easy going nature!

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  5. I thought I needed a hen… Then, as I continued reading, I changed my mind… poor thing!
    My meditation facilitator would talk about the practice of forgiveness. It’s so darn difficult, but it’s the best way no doubts about it.
    : )

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    1. 'Practice of forgiveness' - sounds like an interesting topic. I feel that as I advance in age I become more forgiving in nature, and that pleases me.

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  6. Duta, I am curious. What is your country of residence? You don't have to answer. : )

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  7. When someone upsets me I try not to send bad vibes back to them, but instead put it in God's hands to help me forgive that person, and to help them with any problems they might have with me. It takes two to cause a problem, and I am aware that.
    As for chickens over the head, that is not a good practice because chickens have the right not to be treated in an unkind way.
    A good blog, which made me think, Duta.

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    1. I am with you on this Vera: "put it in God's hands" God will know what to do about it.

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  8. Definitely, writing about it will always help. There are some things we can't let go so easily. Hope you are staying well this October.

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    1. Yes, writing could be a good way of releasing anger. Even better, if one decides to destroy the paper on which the negative feelings are written.

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  9. Me ha sorprendido que en la religión más antigua del mundo, aún se mantengan en pleno siglo XXI este tipo de ritos, más propio de brujos y chamanes de latino américa.
    Así como también el espíritu egoísta de quienes lo llevan a cabo, de pasar sus pecados a un pobre animal que después es sacrificado.
    Por lo que comparto tu opinión, y haces muy bien en desahogarte, y en dárnoslo a conocer, ya que estoy totalmente en contra del maltrato de los animales.
    Ha sido para mi un placer dar con tu blog, por lo que te seguiré visitando; y he intentado hacerme seguidor tuyo, pero me ha dado "error", así que que volveré a intentarlo en mi próxima visita.
    Un cordial saludo.

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    1. Thanks for your visit and comment, Manuel. Yes, I'm not proud of this ritual with regards to the fowl treatment. Hopefully, it'll totally be eliminated from our tradition or replaced with some less cruel way of doing things.

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  10. I think rituals are important and I"m not sure one always need to the ritual of tradition but create their own ritual that serves the same purpose. I think I would pass on the chickens but I like your idea -- and the writing is always good.

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    1. I'm for creating new rituals, more relevant to the period we live in. The one with sacrificing the fowl is primitive,cruel, not compatible with most people's beliefs.

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  11. I've always found writing to be a great way to release anger, anxiety, stress and several other negative feelings. I write everything into a composition book, sparing no cursing. I even right that I hate. Once I am done I read it again and add if I need too. Then I take black acrylic paint and I black it all out and I feel like I purged everything. I put it in writing and blacking it out is like casting it into the blackness so it won't bother me anymore. And I don't know why, but it works and I don't have to kill any innocent animals. As always your posts make me stop and think about how and why we do things.

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    1. You're a good writer, anyway. You may always trust your style and composition.
      Blacking out the writing with paint for the purpose of purging, is a good idea!

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  12. Good post, Duta! Interesting with the "kapparot' ritual. The money variation sounds better than the chicken, but I get that, as long as the chicken provides a meal. I think most of feel frustrated, etc by someone's behavior and actions and this is one way to deal with it. Better than beating yourself up and dwelling on it; release and let go however it works. Easier said than done sometimes!

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    1. Thank you, Pam.
      You seem to understand the 'logic' behind the ritual, and see the whole picture. The chicken provides the meal, she's going to die for us, and on the way take with her our sins too.

      Well, chickens are going to be slaughtered anyway for the meat. I'll just feel better if no prayer about the sins and about their death precedes this.

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  13. I would choose to spare the fowl. Money is a good idea. As for me, I will commit and surrender the offence and offender to God. I will then choose to to forgive that person and move on. It helps and allow me to move on and set free from unforgiveness.

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  14. I agree to your opinion on the issue: use of money as kappara, putting the offence in God's hands,choose to forgive to the offender. Thanks.

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  15. Not sure I believe that ones sins can be transferred to anyone or anything else.

    I eat meat and so as long as the animals are killed humanely, I'm fine with eating met. I know that not all farm animals aren't killed humanely at times but hopefully that area will get better.

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    1. There's ,indeed, much more awareness now to the issue of killing of animals for human consumption. 'Humane' is the key word. It has to be done by a humane method.

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  16. I didn't konw about this ritual. Your approach is better or the money thing.

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    1. It's a jewish ritual, Alexa. It's undergoing changes beacuse of protests regarding the use of a fowl as a 'kappara'.

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  17. I certainly hadn't heard of this ritual.
    I prefer your method with the writing.

    All the best Jan

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    1. THE WRITING IS NOT MY IDEA, BUT ן ACCEPT IT AS A BETTER OPTION THAN THE EXISTING ONE.

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  18. "...the name of the person who has done me wrong , and say the prayer by which my sins will be transferred to him/her."

    Oh no... Duta, I think this would have dire consequences. It would find its way back. I just know it. Better to give it to the Lord and be done with it.

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    1. 'Better to give it to the Lord" Right. I agree, Sandi.
      I know they say don't curse as it might come back to you. Not if he has done you wrong with no provocation from you.

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    2. I don't know, Duta. I've been forgiven too much to play with fire like that.

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    3. Indeed, it's playing with fire. Not worth it.

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  19. I haven't heard of this before, I think that this is an interesting practice! Not one I'd like to do though, I like eating chicken but don't think I could handle killing one myself!

    The money one sounds like a much more modern replacement!

    Hope that you are having a wonderful weekend :) We had a beach day yesterday!

    Away From The Blue

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    1. Modern replacement - a much needed one for those who wish to stick to the ritual.
      Like you I don't like the existing practice and I don't like to kill chickens. By the way, there are more humane ways of killing an animal these days.

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  20. Feel better and then let it go.

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  21. Rituals would be changed in the stream of history.
    Happy Halloween!

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    1. I very much hope you're right. The 'kapparot' ritual certainly has to undergo change.

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  22. I am convinced that in all religions, humans added these "rules" when you think how often the Tora, Bible o Koran wwas translated and everybody put a little bit in the text or made mistakes, (I worked as a translator ) Animals don't sin and then what is a sin ? It's another invention of humans.
    You asked me why so many Americans lived in Waterloo, that's why the St Johns school is here and all English speaking children go in this school. So we have many nationalities here ! A lot of British people became Belgians when they heard about the Brexit, they didn't want to move ! If you want sent me your email then I can answer your questions more easily. I never go back to a blog I hae read to see if there is a comment ! Takes too much time.

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    1. True, Gattina. It's humans that invent and add all kinds of 'rules' such as those regarding 'sins', to the holy scripts.
      Thanks for answering my question about Americans in Waterloo.

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  23. HI Duta,
    Thank you always for sharing.
    I have heard of this ritual.
    The good news is that God`s ways are much greater than ours and that He has made a provision for our sins. It is not in the blood of animals, it is in the blood of the Anointed One who took the sins of the world upon Himself once and for all. His body was pierced, bruised and broken for us. `He was pierced for our transgressions, crushed because of our iniquities. The chastisement for our shalom was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed.`~Isaiah 53:5

    This verse and the one below are from Tree of Life Version of the Holy Scriptures.
    Blessings and May His Shalom be upon you dear Duta!!

    Yeshua Atoned for Our Sin

    2 My children, I am writing these things to you so that you will not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an Intercessor with the Father—the righteous Messiah Yeshua. 2 He is the atonement for our sins, and not only for our sins but also for the whole world.

    1John 2:1~2

    ❤️

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    1. Hi Shayndel,

      I didn't know that, as Jeshua isn't mentioned or referred to in the jewish tradition, as far as I know.
      If the verse in John is true, than it's all settled for those who believe in Jeshua. He's the atonement.
      Anyway, the animal thing in the jewish ritual has to be eliminated.

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    2. That's been a debate for 2000 years. Do the Messianic prophecies mean Him? Does Isaiah 53 talk about Him?

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    3. Sandy dear, I have no answers to your questions as my knowledge in these matters is null.
      I'm very moved by Shayndel's powerful description: 'He was pierced, crushed, bruised, broken - all this suffering for the healing and shalom of the people. And now the revelation in John, that he's the atonement!

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  24. Like so many others who commented, Duta, I too had never heard of the Kapparot ritual. It did seem unusual, and when you mentioned that the chickens would be killed for meals I didn't feel any better. Everyone has been hurt by words others have thoughtlessly said. And while that doesn't excuse the other person, it is better to forget because not doing so gives that person control over your emotions. I did like your alternative about saying the person's name 3 times, saying a prayer and transferred to the other person.

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  25. Exactly, by refusing to forget, one gives the offending party control over the offended's emotions.It's better to ignore the whole thing, and go on with our life.

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  26. What you said doesn't sound stupid, DUTA. I need your sentiments at present...the past couple of weeks have burdened me with much anxiety...I need to wave something above my head and transfer the evil doings across to the evil-doers!!

    Thank you. :)

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    1. You're welcome. Lee.
      We're human after all; sometimes we get put to unwanted and unexpected trial by others, and it's hard to cope with the situation. So, we naturally try to think of a way out.

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  27. your words about the ritual with the chicken made me smile, as it reminded me that in the church (which I no longer am a part of) they were big on forgiveness and that's one thing I dont agree with! I like the idea of heaping my sins on someone who did me wrong! We have pricing on shelves, it doesn't make so much difference to me, the supermarkets here compete so strongl that pricing only goes up when the cost of producing or delivering to store impacts, what I have noticed in the UK though is that the products are becoming smaller in weight and being charged the same price which is inevitable in the current day.

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    1. Now I smile reading in your comment that you like the idea of "heaping" your sins on someone who did you wrong.
      Competition is a good thing; producers, however, find a way to maximize their profit.

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  28. que lastima, pobres animales, tu opcion me gusta mucho mas, a veces hay gente que sacan lo peor de nosotros, debemos intentar que su mala fe no nos afecte.

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    1. WWhat a shame, indeed!
      I agree with you that "there are people who bring out the worst in us".

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