Yael Eckstein

Yael Eckstein

Right now, Jews around the world are preparing for the holiest time on the Jewish calendar, known as the High Holy Days. This holy season begins with Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, and concludes ten days later with Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. While these are the two main holy days, the High Holiday season also includes Sukkot, the Feast of Tabernacles, Shemini Atzeret, the “Eighth Day of Assembly,” and Simchat Torah, literally “rejoicing in the Torah”

Yael explains that they are guided along this journey by the three pillars of the High Holy Days — repentance, prayer, and charity.

Repentance, teshuvah in Hebrew, is about taking a moment to examine our hearts and see the places in our lives where God needs to be invited back in. Through teshuvah, whose root word is shuv, meaning “return,” Jews focus on returning to God and to their true selves by realigning their intentions and aspirations with God’s will.

The second pillar is prayer — the foundation of our relationship with God. Through prayer, we develop our love for God and experience His love for us. As with any relationship, in order to keep it fresh and deepen that connection, we need to make it a priority.

“When we strengthen our love for God through our prayers, we develop effective skills to be open to blessings so that His love pours down on us,” Yael says. “Then, we are ready to share His love with others.”

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Right now, Jews around the world are preparing for the holiest time on the Jewish calendar, known as the High Holy Days. This holy season begins with Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, and concludes ten days later with Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. While these are the two main holy days, the High Holiday season also includes Sukkot, the Feast of Tabernacles, Shemini Atzeret, the “Eighth Day of Assembly,” and Simchat Torah, literally “rejoicing in the Torah”

Yael explains that they are guided along this journey by the three pillars of the High Holy Days — repentance, prayer, and charity.

Repentance, teshuvah in Hebrew, is about taking a moment to examine our hearts and see the places in our lives where God needs to be invited back in. Through teshuvah, whose root word is shuv, meaning “return,” Jews focus on returning to God and to their true selves by realigning their intentions and aspirations with God’s will.

The second pillar is prayer — the foundation of our relationship with God. Through prayer, we develop our love for God and experience His love for us. As with any relationship, in order to keep it fresh and deepen that connection, we need to make it a priority.

“When we strengthen our love for God through our prayers, we develop effective skills to be open to blessings so that His love pours down on us,” Yael says. “Then, we are ready to share His love with others.”

 

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