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RABBI YAKOV NASIROV
YOM KIPPUR

This is the holiest day of the Jewish calendar. A day when the bonds of the material world are loosened and for a day we are as angels. But as angels go without physical comfort, so do we. A human being is a synthesis of the physical and of the spiritual. On Yom Kippur, we act as if we are only spiritual. On Rosh Hashana we are judged and on Yom Kippur, G-d willing, we are forgiven. Therefore in many ways, Yom Kippur is more of a Yom Tov than is Rosh Hashana. Even without material comforts, Yom Kippur is a joyful day because we have absolute confidence in the mercy of G-d. We spend the day in prayer, not only because we have more to pray for, but because by divine grace, we are given the opportunity to speak to G-d more directly than on any other day. Yom Kippur can bring forgiveness to those imperfect acts between man and G-d. But misdeeds between man and his fellow man, G-d will not forgive until man has forgiven. Therefore, before Yom Kippur, it is the custom to ask forgiveness from anyone we may have offended or wronged in any way.
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