The Yom Kippur Confession (Viddui)

A first step toward repairing a wrong

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The Viddui, which means “confession,”  is a prayer recited just before Yom Kippur, and repeated many times throughout the holiday.

READ: Prayer Services for Yom Kippur

During the Viddui, worshipers gently beat themselves on the chest for each transgression listed. This action serves as a symbolic punishment for our hearts, which are ultimately responsible for leading us to sins of greed, lust and anger.

READ: A Guide to the High Holiday Prayerbook

The Viddui includes the Ashamnu, an alphabetical acrostic of different sins we have committed. It is said in first-person plural, because while each individual may not have committed these specific sins, as a community we surely have, and our fates are intertwined on this day. For the full text of the Ashamnu in Hebrew and English, click here.

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The Viddui, which means “confession,”  is a prayer recited just before Yom Kippur, and repeated many times throughout the holiday.

READ: Prayer Services for Yom Kippur

During the Viddui, worshipers gently beat themselves on the chest for each transgression listed. This action serves as a symbolic punishment for our hearts, which are ultimately responsible for leading us to sins of greed, lust and anger.

READ: A Guide to the High Holiday Prayerbook

The Viddui includes the Ashamnu, an alphabetical acrostic of different sins we have committed. It is said in first-person plural, because while each individual may not have committed these specific sins, as a community we surely have, and our fates are intertwined on this day. For the full text of the Ashamnu in Hebrew and English, click here.

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