26 September 2012

Year 2, Day 257 (Yom Kippur)

Today is Yom Kippur, translated in english as Day of Atonement. A day that we reflect upon the past year's events within our personal lives, seek forgiveness from those whom we may have done wrong, forgive those who may ask for it, and seek repentance from HaShem, our G-d. It was first implemented by the command of HaShem in Vayikra (Leviticus) 16:1-34, which is also one of the readings we have on this day. For those who are unaware, HaShem is Hebrew, which translates, literally, as "The Name". In Judaism, many (like myself) hold The Lord's name (one of many) in such high reverence, that we address Him as such, instead of speaking out His Holy Name. One of the spellings of His Name is referred to as the tetragrammaton (י-ה-ו-ה). This, when one comes upon it in Scripture, is read simply as HaShem, or it is even permissible to speak it out as, "the yod-heh (י-ה) as joined with the vav-heh (ו-ה)." Not to be misled, though, this is the same G-d that you study in the Bible, whereas Allah (in the quran) is not.

Yom Kippur is also spent as a day of fasting and praying. Anybody who has taken part in such will agree that the praying is easy, the fasting takes some discipline and devotion. For us, fasting is more than choosing one thing to refrain from eating and/or drinking, especially on Yom Kippur. On this day, we fast from all food and drink. Though, much like the Sabbath (and Yom Kippur is also observed as a Sabbath), exceptions can be made. If one has health issues where fasting could be detrimental, they are permitted to eat or drink (whichever would prevent danger of the health issue). In Judaism, life is precious.

The fasting has been relatively easy, though it proves much more difficult as I drive by restaurants. Though I continue to look to HaShem for the strength and endurance to carry on. Fortunately, I do not have a job that requires strenuous activity. I bless HaShem that He has given me the strength to carry on, as I will also bless Him at the end of this fast.

May you all be blessed!

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