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Forgiveness in the Desert | Milestones Israel

Anytime I climb a mountain in the desert, I think of Moses. The same man who was told: “And you shall see the land but never inherit it”.

It is so beautiful from the tops of these mountains. You can’t see the small details that interfere with the harmony of the colors or man’s harmful affect on nature’s perfection.

Mount NevoOver the Rosh Hashanah holiday, I found myself atop Mount Nevo in the Negev with my family at my side. This time, I didn’t think of all the disappointments but rather of forgiveness and understanding. I thought of Moses on top of Mount Sinai.

Standing at the edge of the impressive cliffs of the Ramon crater, I thought of leaders who forgive their betrayers, of the heartache caused by the drastic emotions involved when you achieve a personal goal only to be disappointed. I thought of Moses, who forgave the fears of his people. After all, they had no control over their destiny and only he held the knowledge and belief that they were headed to a better place.

On Mount Saharonim, overlooking the Ramon Crater, I could almost feel Moses’ pain as he stepped down from Mount Sinai, eager to bring his nation the words of g-d, only to be greeted with the golden calf.

What mighty powers must this man have had to forgive his people of such a transgression?!

Suddenly I saw my children walking ahead of me, self-confident and independent, and I thought to myself: “Everyday, we forgive our children, again and again. Moses treated the people of Israel as his own children and understood that forgiveness is just another step on the road towards maturity, to a life led with good values, a love of mankind and the desire to be better people.”

 This is what Yom Kippur is all about. This, the holiest day of the Jewish year, is a time for us to repent, to atone for our sins against g-d so that we can be forgiven and be inscribed in the good book. In the days leading up to Yom Kippur, it us our chance to make amends with others we have wronged throughout the year so that we can start over with a clean slate.

Friday evening marks the start of Yom Kippur and serves as a reminder that we must forgive and be forgiven. From all of us at Personal Tourism, we wish you an easy fast and that you may be inscribed in the good book.

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