At The Little Market, we are proud to celebrate cultural diversity. Our community of supporters, including customers, readers, our team, and the artisans we work with, are from all over the world. We value inclusivity, and we currently work with more than 60 artisan groups in 28 countries. On this blog, Cultural Exchange, we love to explore different cultural traditions and holidays recognized across the globe. Today, we focus on Yom Kippur.
Yom Kippur is the “Day of Atonement” and is one of the holiest Jewish holidays. This year, Yom Kippur begins on Sept. 18 and is observed through the evening of Sept. 19. This holy day marks the ending of the 10 days of repentance, which begin with Rosh Hashanah. Yom Kippur is observed on the 10th day of Tishrei, the seventh month within the Jewish calendar.
Based on tradition, it is believed that during this time of the new year, God decides the fate of observers. In tradition, God will forgive the sins of observers who ask for forgiveness and who display their repentance by positively changing their actions and moving forward through good acts.
During this time, observers will ask for forgiveness from God and from one another, pray and attend worship services throughout the day, meditate, and refrain from eating and drinking for 25 hours (with the exception of the elderly, anyone who is ill, children, and women who have recently given birth). Other practices include wearing white, which is a symbol of purity, avoiding work, not wearing makeup and lotions, refraining from bathing, and not wearing leather shoes during this time period.
When services are concluding, there are closing prayers and the blowing of the shofar. The shofar is a ritual musical instrument that is carved in the shape of a ram’s horn and is often used within Jewish services. There is one long blast of the horn to mark the conclusion of Yom Kippur and the fasting period.
To those observing Yom Kippur, we wish you a good holiday!