[Avodah] No apologies, just a kiss

Micha Berger micha at aishdas.org
Mon Oct 18 12:25:11 PDT 2021

On Thu, Sep 16, 2021 at 11:24:53PM -0400, Akiva Miller via Avodah wrote:
> (1) From where did we get the word "mochel", linguistically?

One can also be mochel a debt. So, when I davening, I think it more
as pardoning, preventing the consequences of the action. And mechilah
alone treats sin a bit economically; I forgive the wrong and don't
expect recompense.

Whereas I thought selichah is more like forgiveness, and restoring
the relationship.

One can restore the relationship but still expect repayment for the
wrong. One could be mochel the debt but still not want further
contact with the person.

And therefore, the way I think of the words when davening, there is a
lot of forgiveness in Tanakh. What there isn't is pardoning someone in
an economy of wrongs sort of way without healing the relationship.
Which is why kisses are so significant. They show selichah.

Then there's the centerpiece of YK, kaparah -- containing the midah
or taavah that led one astray. Like the kapores on the aron. Which is
why it's the step before taharah, removing the flaw like dross from
zahav tahor. Ki bayom hazeh yekhapeir aleikhem letaheir eskhem...

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger                 You want to know how to paint a perfect
http://www.aishdas.org/asp   painting?  It's easy.
Author: Widen Your Tent      Make yourself perfect and then just paint
- https://amzn.to/2JRxnDF    naturally.              -Robert Pirsig

More information about the Avodah mailing list