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  • The Shofar Sound

    The Shofar sound is more than just a blast from a "horn". It's used produce one of several unique sounds which will penetrate or cut into the hearts and souls of all the inhabitants who hear it. A blast from a shofar has been ascribed to the voice of God. It can also be described or used as a wordless prayer that can even change the.atmosphere. The unique sound can awaken His people to turn back to Him. It can also be used as a call to workship, warfare, healing, prayer and even celebration! It is especially used during the High Holy Days, Feasts, and Festivals

    Types of Shofars

    There are two types of Shofars (trumpets), namely the Silver Trumpet and the Rams Horn "shofar". talked about in the Scriptures. The shofar is usually made fom the hhrn of a male sheep "Ram", yet a shofar can be made from an wild goat, anelope, Africn Kudu, or any kosher animal. Traditionally, the only kosher animal whose horn is NOT used is a cow, because it is reminder of the golden calf in Exodus 32.

    The Yemennite/Kudu: This shofar is one of the most popular shofars.

    The Ram's Horn: This horn is mentioned in the binding of Issac on Mt. Moriah.

    What is a shofar?

    A shofar (שופר) is an ancient musical instrument, similar to a horn or trumpet, that has been used by the Israelites for thousands of years. The sounds of the shofar have been deployed on a variety of occasions throughout Israel's history, including to announce a new moon, the start of a jubilee year, or when Shabbat approached, as well as to warn communities of the beginning of a battle or war. Before the destruction of the Temple, a shofar would be blown alongside a trumpet by the Temple's orchestra. In Hebrew, the word literally means ram's horn. In English, the word shofroth is the plural form of shofar.

    Is the shofar mentioned in the Torah?

    Yes! The shofar is first mentioned in Exodus, when God says the Israelites will hear the "long blast" of a ram's horn, signaling that they can go up to Mount Sinai to meet God. The experience of the horn blasting made the Israelites tremble, and the sound became louder and louder. The commandment to blast the shofar specifically on Rosh Hashanah is found later in the Torah, in the Book of Leviticus. The significance of sounding the shofar is mentioned throughout other parts of the Talmud, Biblical commentaries, and Midrash, with many great thinkers in Judaism drawing connections between the story of Abraham binding Isaac and the shofar.

    How is Abraham related to the shofar or the Jewish New Year?

    While Abraham does not sound the shofar anywhere in Genesis. However, a ram plays a major role in the story of binding of Isaac. According to Genesis, a ram was caught in a bush by its horns nearby and was ultimately sacrificed instead of Isaac. This story is read in synagogue on the second day of Rosh Hashanah, as many believe that the binding occurred on the Jewish New Year. However, many commentators have also found significance and connections between Abraham binding Isaac and the use of (and preference for) a ram's horn in Judaism as a wake up call. In the Talmud, Rabbi Abihu says the shofar is sounded on Rosh Hashanah because "The Holy One, Blessed be God, said: Sound before Me a shofar so that I may remember on your behalf the binding of Isaac, the son of Abraham, and account it to you as if you had been bound yourselves before Me."

    Do different shofar blasts mean different things? Is there a specific order?

    Yes! There are three main types of blasts: Tekiah (תקיעה‎), Shevarim (שברים‎), and Teruah (תרועה‎). You will hear all three of these blasts on the holiday of Rosh Hashanah. On Yom Kippur, some communities will utilize all three of these blasts, while others only blow the Tekiah Gedolah. The order of the blasts depends on the day and specific prayer service.Tekiah is one single long blast of the shofar, while Shevarim is three short blasts that are sounded one right after the other. Teruah is a series of short blasts, also done in quick succession. Tekiah Gedolah is when someone blows the shofar once for as long as they can. Tekiah is meant to bring us to attention, while Shevarim is meant to sound like crying.

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