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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Holy Day!

On the Today Show, someone said it was a holy day.

Could not quite place it, ritual-avoiding-toff that I am.

But I ran through the lists: just did Rosh HaShanah ("head of the year"!), Ramadan ended a while ago, and the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary was way back on August 15.

Well, its Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement.
I used to say Yom Kippurim... or even an overly correct - and thus incorrect - yom ha-kippurim, I have the unfortunately tendency to hum and shuffle in my head about "the day of kippers" instead of the Day of  Expiations.

The basis of the whole meghillah is the verb root kaphar, which has the idea of "paying a debt in full".

When I hear that, I immediately think of "forgive us our debts" versus "forgive us our trespasses"...
Where are we going with this?
When sin is expiated, the debt is abolished; the slate is wiped clean. One of the chinks in our super-hero armor today is our inability to wipe the slate clean, to forgive a debt.

As difficult as it is to forgive a trespass, it is a million times more difficult to forgive a debt.

In the coming time, there will not be a Rapture, there will not be an End-of-Time, but there will be an Era of Impossible Things-To-Do Lists, and forgiving debts might be on it.

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