I recently posted a round-up of humanistic Jewish resources for Rosh Hashanah, and it seems to have hit a sweet spot. So, let’s do it again–for Yom Kippur!
(Updated to add additional links)
The same proviso from Rosh Hashanah’s post applies: I know I won’t come close to getting everything; if I miss something you think is important, please let me know and I’ll edit the post if it’s appropriate. If you’ve got suggestions, let me know in the comments.
As always, if you’re looking for a community to celebrate with, check the Society for Humanistic Judaism and Congress of Secular Jewish Organizations websites for affiliate communities in your area. Again, remember that there may be a group near you that you may not know about! Many of our communities are small or relatively informal (or both).
The SHJ and International Institute for Secular Humanistic Judaism websites both have bookstores with plenty of interesting material for purchase. And, of course, other Jewish sources are also good. (See the Rosh Hashanah post for suggestions.) I think I would be remiss to forget here what I forgot on the Rosh Hashanah post: there are lots of books with hands-on activities for kids and adults. The well-known Jewish Catalogs, etc., which have a distinctly Jewish Renewal direction to them, are one example. A snarky option for adults (if you can find it–no, you can’t have my copy!) is the book, Judaikitsch, subtitled “Tchotchkes, Schmattes & Nosherei.” (There’s not so much in it for Yom Kippur, but it’s still a fun read. Come on, a “Neil Tzedakah Box”? “Berry Manilow”? Comedy gold, I tell ya.)
The Society for Humanistic Judaism has a good article on the basics of Yom Kippur in secular humanistic Judaism, and that’s a recommended starting place; as with the Rosh Hashanah article, there’s a nice bullet-point list of themes for the holiday. Rabbi Jeffrey Falick (rabbi at the Birmingham Temple and blogger at The Atheist Rabbi) has a video on Yom Kippur. Rabbi Falick also has a blog post about Yom Kippur for secular humanistic Jews.
The City Congregation for Humanistic Judaism has materials, including an excerpt of materials from Yom Kippur liturgy it has used in the past. City Congregation’s YouTube channel includes a number of videos, as well. There’s a playlist with videos featuring Rabbi Peter Schweitzer of City Congregation, and Rabbi Miriam Jerris of the SHJ; you can access that, along with information about City Congregation’s High Holidays celebrations, here.
Machar, an SHJ affiliate in Washington, D.C., also has sample services and YouTube videos available here.
Rabbi Adam Chalom of Kol Hadash in Chicago has texts of his sermons on his blog. Kol Hadash maintains a podcast with Rabbi Chalom’s sermons and classes; you’ll find audio of prior years’ sermons there, and when ready the current year’s sermons, as well. (The podcasts are available on iTunes, too.)
Also, for my ready reference, links to my posts from Yom Kippur last year:
- Yom Kippur (links to videos with Rabbi Jerris and Rabbi Falick)
- Yom Kippur Pre-Game
- Yom Kippur – Say What You Mean