It's that time of year, once again. Yom Kipur, the day of atonement. In other words, a day to be hungry. One of the ideas behind fasting is that it allows you to concentrate on all of the less admirable things that you have done during the past year. I think about when I'm going to eat next and, I'm CERTAIN, I'm not the only one with this thought.
It should be disclosed (passive tense is so lame) that I am a progressive agnostic. I have grown progressively less interested in religon and faith as I have lived my life. Religon is all too often used for a crutch, excuse, justification, or other nefarious purpose. Terrorists kill in the name of religon. "Rehabilitated" substance abusers often turn to religon as part of their healing. It's crap. All of it. Besides, the rules of religon (Ten Commandments, Bible, for example) set forth basic pillars of human descency, healthly practices, and common sense. I do not need the threat of being smited hanging over me to do what's right (most of the time).
But back to Yom Kippur. I attend temple for the sake of my children. I was a Bar Mitvah and was confirmed. Both experiences were very positive and important for me and my family. I want my children to have exposure to these same experiences and then, when they are of a certain age, they can decide that it's all crap as their father has. Which leads me to today's amusing musing involving religon. We were attending the "community service" at KI, Jill's temple in Allentown, PA. After a quick game of Simon Says in Hebrew (I kid you not), the rabbi offered all families to come up to the podium for an individual blessing. Hey, the service is about an hour, Simon Says only took about 15 minutes and the rabbi needed some filler. Brilliant move!! So we all went up to the bimah, stood in front of the rabbi, and received a blessing. As we were walking off the bimah, Dooper turns to me and says in a tone laden with contempt that no 4 year old should know, "What was THAT all about?" She nailed the inflection. It was a perfectly uttered rhetorical question. And while I stood amazed at my daughter's remarkable grasp of timing, tonality, and wit, I started to fear what the future may hold. That's the sassy stuff that I will be hearing for many years to come. I'm in trouble. Then again, with three daughters, I knew that.
I hope everyone has an easy fast. Happy New Year. Let's eat!