[Here is the excerpt from her blog. The bold are the phrases that stuck out to me most.]I have often wondered if God would consider it a sin that I have not fasted on Yom Kippur. I don't think so. I have decided this holiday to let go of any guilt about not doing it "right" and just following my heart and align myself with God as best I can.
"I usually forget about the High Holidays until they are here and then I almost always feel a longing--a pull--to get involved. This time, I completely forgot about Yom Kippur until it arrived. But, now that it is here, I am disappointed I did not plan better. I usually spend some time during the 25 hour period being aware and respectful of all of the people in my religion who are fasting and atoning for their sins. I love the Jewish religion and so many of the traditions that I grew up with. I usually do not fast on Yom Kippur and I almost always feel guilty for not doing it. I also feel guilty for anything I do that is not "following the rules", even though I am not completely sure what those rules are. I probably am not supposed to be writing a blog on Yom Kippur (even though they didn't have blogs when they created the holiday).
Sin or "het" in Hebrew means "to go astray" or to wander from God. As I interpret it, the Jewish religion is not big on punishment for sins or going to hell. Moreover, the feeling I have always gotten is that if you stray from your alignment with God, you just need to go back and get aligned again. No fire or brimstone--just a realization that things need to change. It makes so much sense to me to have that time for prayer and turning inward where you are shut off from the world.
- If I am not for myself, who will be for me?
- And when I am for myself, what am 'I'?
- And if not now, [then] when?
This quote is by Hillel--a famous Jewish religious leader. In my mind, he is talking about taking time for yourself and getting a sense of who you are. What a great idea to create time to do that once a year to take time out from your "life".
What happens to me when I stray from God? I get angry,frustrated, hopeless.... and many other unpleasant emotions. What happens when I am aligned with God? I feel peace, joy and a deep connectedness to life.
I believe very strongly that God is not some man with a beard who sits in heaven in judgment of us. God is within each and every one of us and we can access that energy at any time."
I feel so much relief... Its hard to explain. I don't really care if the LDS church is true. Or the Jewish church... or the Buddhist church... or... I want to be aligned with God. Whatever that means. Whoever I need to be. I want to be with Him.