High Holidays

Kol Nidre: Community and Confession

For many, many years I have attended High Holidays at my congregation. The most attended service of the year is Kol Nidre, the evening service on Yom Kippur. While Rosh Hashanah is joyous, Yom Kippur feels sorrowful to me even though I love it. Yom Kippur is traditionally viewed as one of the two happiest…

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Spiritual Guardrails

For a month before the High Holy Days begin with Rosh Hashanah, we have the month of Elul. It is a time to reflect on who we are, how we are doing morally and spiritually, and what we want to do better in the coming year. Rabbi Avi Schulman of Temple Beth Torah in Fremont…

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Don’t Orthodox Jews HAVE to fast on Yom Kippur?

Some Jews are commanded NOT TO FAST. Thus, the local Orthodox shul, Beth Jacob Congregation in Oakland, has sent out this reminder to their members several times in the last couple weeks. Location for Medically Required Food and Nursing Mothers: While the holiest day of the year involves five forms of physical restriction (see below for…

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