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Religion & Theology
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Jewish Day of Sanctification (Essay Sample)


Writing Assignment Essay
For this writing, compose an essay in which you explore one (1) of the following sets of two (2) religious holidays, festivals, or celebrations provided below. For this chosen, you should discuss the beliefs, events, and current activities associated with their observances. Here are the options from which you will choose only one (1) set to explore: 1) Nowruz and Khordad Sal for Zoroastrians/Parsis. 2) Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur for Jews. 3) Pascha and Pentecost for Christians. 4) Al-Hijrah and Ashura for Muslims. 5) Guru Nanak Jayanti and Vaisakhi for Sikhs. Quotes are limited to religious scriptures ir offical doctrines only. Research sources are academic, scholarly, or primary sources (scriptures or offical doctrines of the religion). MLA formatted citation lidt of at least three (3) research sources. The structure follows a standard college essay format (introduction, body paragraphs, conclusion, and citations). Content is at least 800, but no more than 1200 words (bibliography is not part of the word count). Content appropriate sentence and paragraph structure, proper grammar, and correct spelling punctuation. Demonstrates original writing skills.


Jewish Day of Sanctification 

All over the world, annually, different religious groups have different religious holidays according to their calendars, whereby festivals and celebrations are held in which they participate according to their beliefs and culture of their religion. Different activities always occur at these times to mark the celebrations, whereas some normal activities are always prohibited as these religious celebrations are always considered holy among the religious communities. According to the Jewish religion, the two holidays that are mostly considered the highest holidays are the Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. For many religions, these festivals mark a period for members to reunite and reconnect with family members (Halaby). Also, it allows them to continue with their cultural tradition. This paper illustrates the beliefs, events, and current activities associated with the observances of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur in the Jewish religion.
Yom Kippur is the Jewish day of sanctification and redemption as it is considered the holiest day according to the Jewish calendar. It was the only day when the high priests were allowed to enter the holiest place in the temple and a day of mediation in which the high priest made atonement for the people (Barna and Kovács). Like all Jewish holidays, services marked the beginning of Yom Kippur began just before the sun sets down, known as Kol Nidre. Jews spent the entire evening and the next day at prayer services. The prayers on Yom Kippur center around please for forgiveness, mercy, and understanding (Halaby). The holiday also includes confession of sins from the entire community, hoping that the people can begin the year with a new slate, both individually and collectively forgiven of all past misdeeds, wrongdoings, and sins. Jewish are to approach those they have wronged in the past years and ask for their forgiveness as it's believed to be more challenging to gain forgiveness for sins committed against God.
The tradition was that all the Jews wear all white garments on this holiday because they believed that white symbolizes purity and is understood to reference angelic beings. During this time, Jewish are believed to be closer to the angles than at any time of the year. Activities prohibited during this time included fasting from foods and drinks, no bathing, no wearing lotions or perfume, no wearing leather shoes, and no one to be sexually intimate with their partners (Halaby). During this time, fasting is not enough for the Jew as Yom Kippur demands the Jew to commit to changing their behaviors. At the end of the Yom Kippur service, the ram’s horn is blown to signal the end of this high holy day. People always converge for a festive meal that formally breaks the fast.

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