A Yogic Yom Kippur

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I know that this is untimely however, for the first time I want to talk about my experience this Yom Kippur and how I incorporated Yoga to make it an absolutely incredible experience. I just read a post on Elephant Journal by Zack Lodmer titled Yoga and Judaism, and it reminded me of my experience.
Yom Kippur is known as the Jewish day of repentance and also as the day of judgment. It is in fact known as the holiest day of the Jewish year. For me it is more than that, it is a day of reflection and a day of meditation. I did just that, I incorporated a practice of yoga into my day including asana, pranayama and meditation. During prayer, I reflected on things that I needed to do in the days ahead as well as on how to make my life more spiritual. Some of the things that I thought and that have incorporated is spending quality time with my children and incorporate my culture into their lives to prevent it from getting lost.
The Yom Kippur service goes on from 9:00 AM until 7:30 PM with about a one hour break around 3:00 PM. This does not include the service of Kol Nidre, which takes place on the eve of the holiday, I will hold discussing Kol Nidre for another post.
At the break, I walked to nearby Lake Karina in Gurnee, IL. I walked around the lake and took deep breaths along the one mile walk. I then walked to the shore and practiced a round of sun salutations. Then I sat in a meditative pose and meditated for an hour. My meditation incorporated the sound of the small waves smashing on the shore and used that energy to reflect on my life as a father, lawyer, runner and such.
By the time this day was over, I was in such bliss that it was difficult to return to a normal pace the next day. Many people will not say this about a holiday that requires a full day of fasting, but this Yom Kippur probably was one of the best days of 2012 for me.
I hope to do a similar meditation prior to 2013 to wash away the negative feelings that this year has brought for me personally. If there is anything positive about 2012 for me it was starting a regular yoga practice.
Yoga has changed my life, if you have not tried yoga, I would suggest going to a class. I look forward to continuing my practice as well as running. As I train for the Miami marathon in January, I am convinced that Yoga will help, especially in the cold and dark days of winter.

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