'Slichot' Prayer Tradition before High Holidays of Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur: Synagogue Prayers
We're only a couple of weeks ahead of the Jewish High Holidays of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. And during the month leading up to these holidays, the month of Elul, observant Jews wake up every morning at 5 or 6am and make their way to synagogues such as these in order to pray for forgiveness and recite poetic texts. This period is referred to as the period of "Slichot", Hebrew for atonement. In order to be granted forgiveness and request to become better people, Jews take part in special Sunrise prayers with meaning that dates back to thousands of years ago. It's not simple to show up at synagogue on a daily basis at the crack of dawn. But many Jews make that effort, ahead of their work day, because it is an integral part of their belief system. And this tradition of "Slichot", the Chanting of words from old solemns, is supposed to contribute to searching within and feeling renewed. It appears the concept of self-search is key within the many Jewish values. Sivan Raviv, JN1, Israel.