Yom Kippur in Israel

Yom Kippur seems to be the holiday which more Jews observe than any other holiday. And there’s so many different meanings for all of us. Some quotes which I enjoyed which detail some of the meaning of what is the holiest day on the Jewish calendar:

  • “Who can say ‘I have purified my heart or I have been cleansed from my sins?’ There is no person on earth so righteous that he never sins! Cast away the evil you have done and get a new heart and spirit.” Unknown
  • “Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, is the holy of holies of Jewish time. It is that rarest of phenomena, a Jewish festival without food. Instead it is a day of fasting and prayer, introspection and self-judgment when, collectively and repeatedly, we confess our sins and pray to be written into God’s Book of Life.” Jonathan Sacks
  • “On the Day of Atonement, Jews are commanded to seek forgiveness from the people we have hurt.” Laura Schlessinger
  • “Yom Kippur is a day of reflection…” Jerusalem Post
  • “You can’t undo anything you’ve already done, but you can face up to it. You can tell the truth. You can seek forgiveness. And then let God do the rest.” Tertullian
  • “God’s name was so sacred to the Jews that it was pronounced only once a year by the high priest when giving the blessing on Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement.” Lev. 23:27
  • “…In the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, you shall afflict your souls, and you shall not do any work … For on that day he shall provide atonement for you to cleanse you from all your sins before the L-RD.” Leviticus 16:29-30
  • “It shall be a holy convocation unto you; and ye shall afflict your souls.” Leviticus 23:27
  • “For nearly twenty-six hours—from several minutes before sunset on 9 Tishrei to after nightfall on 10 Tishrei—we ‘afflict our souls’: we abstain from food and drink, do not wash or anoint our bodies, do not wear leather footwear, and abstain from marital relations.” Chabad.org
  • “Every year, we observe Yom Kippur (the Day of Atonement, and the holiest day in the Jewish calendar), by fasting for 25 hours and spending that entire time in contemplation of our sins.” Simon Kelner
  • “Curiously, the Talmud, the prescriptive text of Jewish law, says that Yom Kippur is a day to lift the spirits.” The Independent
  • “Yom Kippur is a complete Sabbath; no work can be performed on that day.” Jewish Virtual Library
  • “Afflict (awnaw) your souls.” Leviticus 26:29
  • “The soul (nefesh) of the flesh is in the blood. And I have given it to you on the altar to make atonement for your souls, for it is the blood that makes atonement for your souls.” Leviticus 17:11
  • “While we should not allow the burdens of the past nor the anxieties of the future to exert a destructive effect on our living, the constructive lessons of the past and a responsible attitude towards the future can guide us to a proper and responsible life.” Rabbi Abraham J. Twerski
  • “According to tradition, it is on Yom Kippur that God decides each person’s fate, so Jews are encouraged to make amends and ask forgiveness for sins committed during the past year. The holiday is observed with a 25-hour fast and a special religious service.” History.com

Have an easy fast.

Ronn Torossian