Adam’s New Jew-ish Idea #3: A Second Yom Kippur

Adam’s New Jew-ish Idea #3: A Second Yom Kippur photo

The High Holidays have once again come and gone and that has prompted me to reflect on reflecting. And in those reflections, I have come to see myself in a new light. Mostly because I just installed new lightbulbs. But also because I had a small chat with myself.

It was a good chat. No chitty whatsoever. And in that chat, there were some good reflections. It helped that I was using a three-way mirror as that makes the reflecting go a lot faster. But during that reflective chat, I had an epiphany in which I realized that I had an inspiration that gave me a great vision for a new insight on reflecting.

Yom Kippur always takes place after Rosh Hashanah. So therefore, you atone for your sins after the New Year. The thing is, I was thinking it would be a lot better to go into the New Year with a clean slate. While I understand the slate-cleaning occurs not long after the New Year starts, it could be argued that it is not a pure, fresh start. Hence why I have an idea that flips it around a bit.

Obviously I can't "celebrate" Yom Kippur before Rosh Hashanah. That would require an awkward amount of time travel and my lawyer says I can only do non-embarrassing amounts of time travel. But maybe, just maybe, I could take the concept of this switcheroo and bring it to me.

I do have quite a list of credentials when it comes to looking at the Jewish holidays and traditions and twisting them juuuust a bit. For example, one of the very first articles I ever wrote for this site was about how I wanted to change the bar/bat mitzvah age to 18. It's still a chai of a good idea. Or how I wrote a couple of years ago about my 8 ideas for adding a lot more to Chanukah to better compete with other holidays that take place around that time. H-kah has never been the same since!

So when it comes to this third new idea of switching around the High Holidays, I've been thinking I still need to keep the holidays close together. Truthfully, I really like the combination of Rosh Hashanah (New Year) and Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) as an overall reflective period. What I want to do is incorporate those two parts into our good old friend, the Gregorian calendar, which, as it turns out, already has its own New Year! So here is my idea: I'm going to observe a second Yom Kippur right before the secular New Year.

Now, while the traditional Yom Kippur is about asking God and each other for forgiveness, for this version I want to be asking myself for forgiveness. As I've gotten older I tend to take a lot of onus for what does or doesn't happen in my life. Rarely will good things come to those who do nothing. And me, I always like to be doing something. I like to feel like I'm always productive. And this year especially, I tried to task myself with failing more. Ironically, I would say I somewhat failed at failing more. And what will happen is I'll kind of get down on myself for this and make myself feel guilty.

So the general idea of my second Yom Kippur is to look back on the calendar year (or more) and really take time to be mindful of what I set out to accomplish, what I did and didn't achieve, and then allow myself to be forgiven for whatever it was I may have not gotten around to.

Now, I don't want to just let myself off the hook that easily. I want to look at what is left to do and form it into what I will do. I want to learn from it and advance myself. I want to look back and know what came before was not the best me, for the best me will still lie ahead.

So perhaps, since this is more of a personal, introspective and self-forgiving version of Yom Kippur, I think the perfect name for it shall be, of course, "Yo' Kippur."

So when exactly will Yo' Kippur take place? While the obvious answer would be 10 days before the New Year, I think the perfect time would be New Year's Eve, because that is the other obvious answer. This makes it so I will absolutely be entering the New Year with a clean slate! Now I just have to go find a slate to clean because I've been using paper notepads these past 30 years. Forgive me for not having any slate on hand.

For the record, when I said "forgive me" I was talking to myself.

Adam Daniel Miller photo 3
Originally from Chicago and well, still living in Chicago, is Adam Daniel Miller -- a lover of writing, a voiceover enthusiast and an overall funny guy, according to his mother. He is a graduate of the University of Iowa Undergraduate Writing Program where he ... Read More

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