Dovy’s Upshrnish

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Wednesday November 16th was a special day for Dovy Blasberg, the charming curly haired youngest son of Rabbi Ahron and Chaya Blasberg, the directors of Chabad Aruba. 

The tables and balloons were set up for a party at the Chabad Jewish Center in Salina Cerca and the excitement was in the air.

It was Dovy’s third birthday and this was a special birthday. In Judaism the third birthday signals a major transition in a child’s education.

For the first three years of life, the child is a receiver, absorbing the surrounding sights and sounds, and the parents’ loving care.

At the age of three, when our forefather Abraham concluded there must be a Creator, a child’s education takes a leap. He or she is now ready to produce and share their unique gifts. For a Jewish boy, this transition is marked with a ceremony. It is an age-old custom to allow a boy’s hair to grow untouched until he is three years old. On his third Jewish birthday, friends are invited to a haircutting ceremony—called an upshernish. The child’s peyot (biblically prescribed sidelocks) are left intact—the initiation into his first mitzvah (Biblical commandment). From this point on, he is taught to wear a kipah (skullcap) as a recognition of G-d above, and tzitzit (fringes), and is slowly trained to recite blessings and the Jewish Prayers. The Tzitzit 4 cornered garment with fringe string tassels is a physical representation of the Torah’s 613 commandments.

The world now begins to benefit from the Torah study, mitzvot, and good deeds of this young child.

As Dovy stood up proudly on his stage to sing Jewish songs and read the Hebrew letters, he was joined by family and friends from the Jewish community of Aruba.

At the conclusion of the ceremony many of the guests were honored with cutting a lock of Dovy’s hair signaling the end of his babyhood and beginning of his formal Jewish education which was followed by lively dancing.

Guests enjoyed a delicious Kosher buffet dinner, and a video presentation showing Dovy’s no no journey.