Shabbat (Hebrew: שַׁבָּת, "rest" or "cessation") or Shabbos (Yiddish: שאבּעס) is the Jewish day of rest and seventh day of the week, on which they remember the traditional creation of the heavens and the earth in six days and the Exodus of the Hebrews, and look forward to a future Messianic Age. Shabbat observance entails refraining from work activities, often with great rigor, and engaging in restful activities to honor the day. The longstanding traditional Jewish position is that unbroken seventh-day Shabbat originated among the Jewish people, as their first and most sacred institution, though some suggest an obscure later, naturalistic origin. Variations upon Shabbat are widespread in Judaism and, with adaptations, throughout the Abrahamic and many other religions.
According to halakha, Shabbat is observed from a few minutes before sunset on Friday evening until the appearance of three stars in the sky on Saturday night. Shabbat is ushered in by lighting candles and reciting a blessing. Traditionally, three festive meals are eaten: in the evening, in the morning, and late in the afternoon. The evening dinner typically begins with kiddush and another blessing recited over two loaves of challah. Shabbat is closed the following evening with a havdalah blessing. Shabbat is a festive day when Jews exercise their freedom from the regular labors of everyday life. It offers an opportunity to contemplate the spiritual aspects of life and to spend time with family.