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An Effective Fast

Friday, 17 September 2010


צוֹם קַל I have always been troubled by this traditional salutations of Yom Kippur. It is translated as “Have an easy fast.” But what would be the point of having an easy fast if the purpose of the fast is to afflict ourselves? The time we spend in shul over the 25+ hours are not meant to be easy. Soul-searching is never easy. And if you think it is, you’re probably not doing it right.

Last year, the Ima wrote a post that perfectly captures my thoughts. (Incidentally, her post on the topic this year is worth reading too!) Among the comments was a suggestion that we use the term צום טוב. Literally “a good fast,” I like to think of it as “have an effective fast.”

So I wish you a צום טוב. May all the soul-work you do be met with favour by the Kodesh Baruch Hu.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. Friday, 17 September 2010 1:43 pm

    Wishing you a meaningful Yom Kippur.

  2. Friday, 17 September 2010 3:25 pm

    I like “effective” – I’m not sure that I know the Hebrew word for that so I think Tzom Tov fits well….

    May your Yom Kippur bring you meaning and peace….sending love your way!

  3. Saturday, 18 September 2010 8:53 pm

    You know, Mah Nishtanah posted something about this back for Tisha B’Av, too 🙂

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