New Year for Trees/The Four New Years
THE FOUR NEW YEARS
The Jewish New YearÂ – Â We Jews are especially fortunate because the Jewish calendar has four different “New Years,” each representing a different feature of the annual cycle.
The first of Nisan
- The Torah considers Nisan the “first month.” The first commandment that G-d gave to the Jewish people was to sanctify the new year, beginning with the month of Nisan.
- The holiday of Passover, which celebrates the formation of the Jewish people as a nation through their redemption from Egyptian slavery, is marked on the 15th of Nisan.
- The first of Nisan is considered the beginning of the year for calculating festivals and the reigns of the Kings of Israel.
The first of Elul
- Elul is the sixth month of the Jewish year.
- The first of Elul is considered the New Year for the tithing of animals.
- Whether an animal is part of the tithe for year “a” or year “b” is determined by whether the animal was born before or after the first of Elul.
The first of Tishrei
- Tishrei is the seventh month of the Jewish year.
- The first of Tishrei is the holiday of Rosh Hashana, which is the New Year of the calendar by which Jews calculate the year.
- The year’s assigned number is calculated from the creation of Adam.
- Rosh Hashana is also the New Year when a person’s behavior is judged by the Heavenly courts.
The 15th of Shevat
- Shevat is the 11th month of the Jewish year.