slide_192470_389288_large.jpg

Thanks to the Huffington Post. For their fully slideshow visit here.

In the lead up to the Jewish period of atonement known as Yom Kippur, at the end of the Jewish religious year, chickens are used in the ceremony known as ‘Kaparot‘.

The ceremony involves people holding chickens above their heads as they recite two of the Pslams and a short prayer. Following the ceremony the birds are slaughtered and given to the poor.

In modern Judaism many Jews have forsaken the chickens for money which is held over the head in the same way and then donated to charity. This is just as well for the chickens as there has been outcry in recent years over the welfare of birds used in this practice, both in the USA and in Israel.

Anyway check out some interesting pictures of this ancient practice on The Huffington Post and The Guardian.