Yom Kippur In Brief
What: Yom Kippur is the holiest day of the year, when we are closest to G‑d and to the essence of our souls. Yom Kippur means “Day of Atonement,” as the verse states, “For on this day He will forgive you, to purify you, that you be cleansed from all your sins before G‑d.”
When: The 10th day of Tishrei, coming on the heels of Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish New Year, which is on the first and second days of Tishrei).
How: For nearly 26 hours (in 2017, from several minutes before sunset Sept. 29 until after nightfall Sept. 30) we “afflict our souls” by avoiding the following five actions:
- Eating or drinking (in case of need, consult a medical professional and a rabbi)
- Wearing leather shoes
- Applying lotions or creams
- Washing or bathing
- Engaging in conjugal relations
Like Shabbat, no work is to be done, and special holiday candles are lit before the onset of the holy day.