Rosh Hashana & Yom Kippur

A True Return

by Rabbi Yaakov Asher Sinclair -
Preparation for Rosh Hashanah
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The month of Elul is the time of return. A time when we try to sensitize ourselves to our mistakes, and work on rectifying them. Elul is a time of preparation.

Preparing for the day on which the whole world is to be judged - Rosh Hashana. A person cannot return to the path from which he has strayed, unless he is prepared to search. That search has to start with an analysis of his own actions. This 'soul searching' is reflected in the name of the month itself, for Elul is an Aramaic term suggesting 'searching'. The sign of the month of Elul is The Maiden, which symbolizes modesty and purity, essential traits in a true return. The faculties of understanding and insight which are astrologically connected to Elul are feminine attributes. A person born under the influence of the sign of Betula (The Maiden) has a natural inclination to analyze in great detail, and a propensity to be a perfectionist. When used positively, these attributes are essential tools in returning to the spiritual path. For we must analyze in great detail where we have gone wrong if we are to have any chance of perfecting ourselves. Similarly, without the aspiration to perfect ourselves, we will never be motivated to change even the smallest fault that we possess.

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