A New Way to Atone

13 Sep

goatIn our modern age of technology and instant gratification, atoning for sins isn’t so easy. In the Torah portion which we will hear this Saturday morning on Yom Kippur, Aaron is told to confess all of the sins of the Israelites onto a goat, which will then be sent into the wilderness, absolving the people. Obviously, we don’t do that anymore. Now we fast, strip ourselves of our daily comforts and adornments like leather and perfume, and we actually have to make an effort to make things right with other people, with ourselves, and with God.

As an incredibly innovative Federation, we are all about new and creative ways to express Judaism. Fortunately, there are now other ways that we can work on bettering ourselves before Yom Kippur. One way is to confess your sins to a virtual goat, which will be sent away to the cyber-wilderness, “Azazel” as it’s called in the Torah. You’ll also be able to read anonymous confessions of others. So, if there’s something that you’ve been really wanting to get off your chest, the goat awaits you to listen unconditionally, without judgment, and free of unsolicited advice!

However you choose to observe Yom Kippur this year, we at The Jewish Federation of Sarasota-Manatee wish you a meaningful holiday.

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