Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The answer to that age old joke.

Why did the chicken cross the road?

Because it was time to preform the Kaparot.

or Kaparot (Hebrew: כפרות‎, "atonements") is a traditional Jewish religious ritual that takes place on the eve of Yom Kippur. Classically, it is performed by grasping a live chicken by the shoulder blades and moving around one's head three times, symbolically transferring one's sins to the chicken. The chicken is then slaughtered and donated to the poor, preferably eaten at the pre-Yom Kippur feast.[1] Preferably, a man should use a rooster, and a woman should use a hen for the ritual. This wiki article can be found here.

This ritual makes me laugh and disturbs me at the same time. I was reading the Toronto Sun when I came across a picture of a Jewish mother performing Kaparot on her son. In the picture, she had a firm grasp of the child's arm as he struggled to get free. In the other hand, she had a white rooster that she was waving above her son's head. The look on the child's face was a similar expression that a little girl would make if you were to hold a handful of earth worms over her head. The reason it makes me laugh is... well... imagine watching someone waving a chicken or rooster over their head. Enough said.

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