Do you say ‘Happy Yom Kippur’?

At first, I thought, my non-Jewish friend who wished me a ‘Happy Yom Kippur,’ needed a better understanding of the most notable Jewish holiday. After all, it’s not a joyous event where you wish friends a ‘Happy’ anything.  It’s a reflective day.  It literally means, Day of Atonement, the day we ask for forgiveness and offer to forgive, despite the personal challenge.  It’s about repairing relationships. It’s about acknowledging where and how we can improve ourselves.  The prayer in the photo is one we say over and over again. It’s the day of judgement where the Book of Life is opened and you hope your name is signed in there for another year.

Today, I learned that maybe my friend wasn’t so far off!  Apparently, an interpretation from ancient times says the word ‘Kippur’, or it’s plural, ‘Kippurim’ can mean ‘with’ Purim.  Purim is a Jewish festival commemorating the defeat of Haman’s plot to massacre the Jews.  There are costumes, merriment and we give gifts of food and treats to one another.  Purim literally means ‘lots’ or ‘lottery’.  When we win the lottery or win against a government official who wants to massacre a people, we feel immense joy, we celebrate. So, on Yom Kippur there is an element of celebration of the joys in our life.

Now, I have a whole new perspective about what I used to think was a somber, solemn day where we deny ourselves food, a basic need, to inspire us to work harder on ourselves.  We are obligated to recognize our joys!  The people in our lives who provide unending joy.  Sometimes joy is short-lived: seeing a rainbow or accomplishing a task.  But we need to acknowledge the joy that comes from nourishing and nurturing friendships with family and friends.  We are challenged to consider how we share our joy with the world.

I feel a deep-seeded overwhelming joy for every day of life I’m given and the many people in my life who enrich me.  It is my obligation to share the joy I feel and bring it into the world, so, as the Rabbi said, we can rise up like the angels and sing Halleluyah so the world will rejoice.

 

 

 

 

By | 2016-10-14T15:18:18+00:00 September 27th, 2012|Making Life Meaningful|0 Comments

About the Author:

Eva Grayzel, a nationally recognized Master Storyteller and performance artist, was diagnosed at age 33 with stage IV oral cancer and given a 15% chance of survival. After regaining her deep vibrant voice, Eva applied her stage skills to communicate the depth of her experience in a unique and powerful way. For over a decade, Eva has captivated dental professionals worldwide using her story as a catalyst for change. She performed ‘Tongue-Tied’ Off-Broadway in New York City to a sold-out audience. A champion for early detection, Eva founded the Six-Step Screening™ oral cancer awareness campaign, for which she was recognized by the American Academy of Oral Medicine. She is the author of ‘Mr. C Plays Hide & Seek’ and ‘Mr. C the Globetrotter.’ In 2017, she created ‘My Story Legacy,’ a creative format to document family stories, life values and wisdom for future generations.

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