Tashlich (tahsh-leek) comes from a root word which means "to cast away". It is the custom when Jews walk to a moving body of water on the first afternoon of Rosh Hashana (or the second day if the first happens to be Shabbat) and "throw away" their sins by tossing bread or cracker crumbs into the water. The concept is taken from a verse in the book of the Prophet Michah where it says,
"And Thou wilt cast ("ve-tashlich") all their sins into the depths of the sea" (Michah, 7:19)
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The preferred body of water is one where there are fish. Fish never close their eyes, a reminder of the ever-watchful eyes of G-d, who records and remembers everything and constantly watches us with mercy.
Additionally, Jewish mystical tradition teaches that fish are immune from the Evil Eye. By casting our sins away where there are fish, we are also asking for protection from the evils of the world.
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During Tashlich, you walk to a nearby body of water. A river, sea, or lake are the best choices although, in their absence, a well or reservoir is acceptable. There is no special prayer for Tashlich. However, there are several Scriptural chapters relating to the idea of penitence and Divine forgiveness which are recited.
The water has SYMBOLICALLY carried away misdeeds and you are free to start over. This action gives one a new starting point for the New Year.
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Post by April Grunspan