La La How The Life Goes On

Please Forgive Me

Posted on: September 18, 2010

It’s my Yom Kippur resolution to blog more regularly. What? You’ve never heard of a Yom Kippur resolution? Perhaps you are not well-versed in my particular denomination of Judaism. There are of course the Orthodox, the Modern Orthodox, the Chasids (who are, I believe, orthodox but not all orthodox are chasids), the Conservatives, the Reconstructionists and the Reform(ists? ers?). I’m sure there are a few more. Including mine, which is Known far and wide (by which I mean in my house) as MSU: The Make Shit Up wing of the tribe. Hence the desperately important liturgical and theological concept of the Yom Kippur Resolution. And kosher bacon-wrapped scallops. And blogging on Yom Kippur. And the practice of observing only 7 days of Passover instead of the standard diaspora 8, on the theory that if 7 is good enough for Israelis then it’s good enough for me. You know how it’s five o’clock somewhere? Yeah, well, after a week without bread or pizza or anything leavened, please believe that it’s day 7 somewhere. I mean, it’s Passover for everyone, right? So if a Jew in Israel is eating pizza why am I still on the matzo? We have clocks and calendars, y’all. I can webcam into Tel Aviv and see my fellow celebrants eating The Leaven, but I insist on not eating it for another whole day because a thousand years ago they didn’t know if it was the right day? You go on with your bad self if that’s how you roll; I wish you godspeed and happiness. But you can meet me at Panera when you’re done. I’ll be the person with her head buried inside that big bread bowl filled with bread soup doused with croutons.

But back to Yom Kippur, the holiday we are currently “celebrating” if you can imagine that a liturgy involving God deciding whether you live or die in his Big Book of Naughty or Nice Jews is a celebration. It’s the most solemn day of the year, the culmination of the Days of Awe which began at Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. It is the holiday in which you must atone for your sins, against God and against other people. I like Yom Kippur in one sense because it requires you to actually apologize to the person you have wronged in order to seek forgiveness. It’s not an opportunity to show up in temple and confess your sins to God so he can wipe your slate clean. It’s an opportunity, a requirement, for you to do the person-to-person work to clean the slate yourself. I like that. Where I struggle is, as usual, finding the humility to repeat the damn liturgy which is all about how great God is and how much a pimple on a stinky bum I am. My entire being resists saying any of that stuff, so I really, really struggle through Yom Kippur services. Partly because, IMHO, the liturgy is wildly outdated, rotely regurgitated, and therefore borderline meaningless to most of the people saying it. But also partly because I am the Living Tautology of Arrogance: I will not bow before God and say what a self-involved shit I am because who the hell is He to demand that I do? All of which simply reflects that I am indeed a self-involved shit who needs to learn some bowing. You see my dilemma…. πŸ˜‰

So where was I? Oh yeah. I’m going to blog more. Most likely on Shabbat.

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3 Responses to "Please Forgive Me"

nice to hear that you are still up to things that need forgiving. πŸ™‚

You just always make me laugh!

We only observe 7 days of Pesach, for the same reasons as you. πŸ™‚

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