Photographer Yaniv Nadav is the Edge of Humanity Magazine contributor of this social documentary photography. These images are from his project ‘Kippur‘. To see Yaniv’s body of work click on any image.
Kaparot Ceremony in Mea Shearim, Israel
The Jewish ritual is supposed to transfer the sins of the past year to the chicken and is performed before the Day of Atonement, or Yom Kippur, the most important day in the Jewish calendar.
Fasting was originally seen as fulfilling the biblical commandment to “practice self- denial.” The Yom Kippur fast enables us, for at least one day each year, to ignore our physical desires, focusing instead on our spiritual needs. Throughout the day, we concentrate on prayer, repentance, and self-improvement before returning to our usual daily routine after the holiday.
According to tradition, all females from age 12 and all males from age 13 must fast. The traditional fast encompasses a full 24-hour period, beginning after the Erev Yom Kippur meal and extending to the following evening. During this time, no eating or drinking is permitted.
Judaism has a deep reverence for life, and though the Yom Kippur fast is of great importance, it is never allowed to jeopardize health. Those too ill to fast (or to fast fully) are prohibited from doing so. Those who need to take medication are allowed, as are pregnant women or women who have just given birth.
By Yaniv Nadav