Thursday, February 16, 2006

Yom Kippur Any Time

Whenever I catch myself beating myself up about something, I tell myself this story, and it pulls me out of it, even if it's not Yom Kippur:

On Yom Kippur, each Jew in synagogue prays for atonement and beats his breast for his sins against God. He cries for divine forgiveness. He says, "before you, God, I am nothing. I am nobody."

One Yom Kippur Mr. Goldberg, a pillar of the community, goes into the synagogue. As he heads through the entrance hall, he passes Mr. Horowitz right there, praying and wailing loudly and pitifully.

Goldberg: "Come into the sanctuary to pray with us."

Horowitz: "I am too unworthy to be in the same room with everyone else."

While Goldberg frowns over this answer, his neighbor Mr. Schwartz enters the lobby. Goldberg says to Schwartz, pointing to Horowitz, "Look who thinks he's nobody!"


Montanus said...

Ah, I don't get it.

Savtadotty said...

Frank - The lesson of the joke is: When a person acts too humble, s/he wraps around to self-absorption and even arrogance.

Montanus said...

I better remember that. Here it's important not to put on airs or be a braggart but I could fall into that trap. After all, I have in my time been a mighty warrior, but modesty precludes my saying more.......