Mideast Israel Ritual Revisited

October 6, 2011 - 2:10 PM
In this picture taken Wednesday, Oct. 5, 2011, ultra-Orthodox Jewish men hold chicken after it was slaughtered as part of the Kaparot ritual in which it is believed that one transfers one's sins from the past year into the chicken in Bnei Brak, an ultra-Orthodox town near Tel Aviv, Israel. For generations, ultra-Orthodox Jews have marked the arrival of Yom Kippur, Judaism's holiest day, by waving live chickens over their heads before slaughtering the birds to atone for their sins. But in a departure from centuries of tradition, a small but growing group of religious leaders are decrying the practice as animal abuse. These rabbis say the practice, along with the cruel conditions they are kept in, violates a biblical injunction against animal abuse. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty)