Simcha's Torah Stories - Acharei Mot
Parshat Acharei Mot
Avi, what's in the bag?
My nice suit that I wear on Shabbos and Yom Tov. I am taking it to be cleaned and fixed.
Can I see how it looks?
Wow, look at all of these stains.
This is almost a whole year's worth of dropped food, spilled drinks, muddy puddles, and other grime.
Avi, your suit is ripped over here on the sleeve.
I know Chaim. The cleaner is going to send it to a fabric repair place where they can re-weave the cloth and you will never see the tear.
I just hope that it is ready before Yom Kippur. I would like to wear a nice clean, fixed suit on Yom Kippur.
Avi, that is almost poetic.
In what way Chaim?
In some ways, Yom Kippur is like sending your suit to be cleaned and repaired.
Chaim, you know that we are not allowed to clean or sew clothes on Yom Kippur.
Of course, Avi. I am referring to the cleaning and fixing that our souls receive on Yom Kippur.
Why do our souls need cleaning and fixing?
Avi, whenever we make a mistake in a mitzvah or halacha (observance of a Torah Law) we put a "stain" on our souls. It is like a little piece of spiritual dirt or a tear in the fabric. Just as our clothing is not so nice when it is stained or torn, so too our souls are not the same. Yom Kippur is a once yearly cleaning and repair of all of the mistakes that have left stains on our souls.
That's great! How do you know all of this Chaim?
It is in this week's Torah portion Avi. The beginning of Parshas Acharei Mos describes the Yom Kippur service in the Beis HaMikdash (Holy Temple). In those days, the service was very elaborate, involving sacrifices, incense, and many other things.
It sounds fascination, Chaim.
Come; let's read about it together. The main thing that we need to remember is that G-d does a wonderful favor for us each year. He allows us to start with a clean, fresh slate. Do you know that good feeling that you have after you wash and put on fresh clothes?
Sure, it's great.
That is what G-d does for our souls on Yom Kippur.
Okay, Chaim. I'll see you after I drop this off at the cleaners. I want to learn all about Yom Kippur. Maybe if we learn enough Torah Law, we will not make the mistakes in the first place.
That's the spirit Avi. Let's put those dry cleaners out of business!
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