Today’s holidays: Ro’sh Ḥodhesh ’Elul (Judaism), Tuesday of the Twenty-Second Week of Ordinary Time (Roman Catholicism), Chaand Raat (Islam), Feast Day of St. Thor (Church of the SubGenius).
Yesterday, thanks to a friend, I attended a demonstration of sheḥiṭah (AKA kasher ritual slaughter) in Petaḥ Tiqwah (the next town east of here). Two chickens and a sheep were killed, and a few tens of people got to see what the inside of a sheep looks like. This was very educational for anyone who wants to know about sheḥiṭah and related ritual phenomena, such as what fat counts as ḥelev (which is forbidden for consumption) and shumman (which is permitted), what portions should be given to a kohen (priest), and gidh hannasheh (the sciatic nerve, which is forbidden for consumption). I did not take pictures, and if I did, I probably would not post them anyway. The demonstration was worthwhile attending, but it was only for people with strong stomachs.
What I found very interesting was not so much the demonstration itself, but the circumstances:
- Attending were not just men, but also women and children, neither of which normally perform sheḥiṭah.
- No one fainted or vomited. My friend told me that some children cried, though I did not notice them at all. In fact, many children stood close to better see the sheep cut up.
- The demonstration was performed in the front yard of a synagogue, in easy view of the street.
- There were no protesters, despite the demonstration being publicly advertised in advance.
While I am posting, a few other items of interest:
- “VIDEO SATIRE: HonestReporting Looks at the Light Side of Life”:
- “Rabbis Of Yesteryear: What Jewish Europe Really Looked Like 80 Years Ago”: No, they were not dressing like Men in Black. They looked a lot like everyone else.
- “Want to Understand Israel?”: A little explanation of the situation over here.