September 18th, 2010


And another one down

Overall, a pretty good Yom Kippur. Kids were there for all of Kol Nidre last night (about two-and-a-half hours) and four hours today (from near the end of Shachrit through the end of Musaf). They were well-behaved and switched their attention well from their books to the service when I asked them to. I'm very proud of and pleased with both of them.

Tani came home with a bunch of great questions about the liturgy, too, so he was really processing stuff. He was troubled by the description of God in "Ki hinei ka-chomer (Like Clay in the Potter's Hands)" as "jealous and vengeful;" he said "that doesn't fit in with the image of God I have from everything else I read." We discussed the aspect of justice vs. the aspect of mercy, and while I didn't get into E vs. J we did segue into the Thirteen Attributes.

We also spent a bit of time after shul last night discussing the specific sins that are enumerated in the confessional, and about how they aren't the major obvious sins like murder and kidnapping, and they're mostly not the ritual sins like missing shul, but they're overwhelmingly societal/behavioral sins, like gossip, mocking, deceiving others, and baseless hatred. He seemed to appreciate that, and today he was much more focused during the confessional, going back and reading the commentary after we finished that section instead of going back to his Bionicles novel right away.

So this may have been my happiest Yom Kippur ever. I don't know if my sins are forgiven, but I feel deeply that I am succeeding in my duty to transmit the depth of our traditions and beliefs to the next generation. And just as my children's bodies are a chance for my genetic heritage to start over without whatever damage life has done to this body, so too my children's souls are a fresh start for my memetic heritage.

And tomorrow morning, we build our sukkah.