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Yom Kippur and the Language of Sorry

This Friday evening, October 3, begins the 25-hour Jewish biblical holiday of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement.

Yom Kippur observances include eating a celebratory pre-fast meal, lighting candles before sundown on Friday, fasting from food and drink from sundown on Friday till Saturday night after dark, communal and individual holiday prayers, avoiding weekday work and activity, and refraining from washing or applying lotions for pleasure, wearing leather shoes, and marital relations. It is considered the holiest day on the Jewish calendar, a special day for starting anew and Divine atonement.

The word atonement doesn’t have to conjure up the image of a child who has just been grounded for a week to atone for unruly behavior, or… Read More »

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