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"G-d Is My Co-Pilot"

by Benyamin Cohen    
Torah from Dixie Editor    

The following is a true story:



The following is a true story:

6:27 PM - The sun is setting over New York on this pleasant summer evening. Tzvi arrives at JFK International Airport to catch a flight back to Israel, via Europe. He needs to make a ticket change, so he approaches the counter. After paying the difference, Tzvi takes his new ticket and proceeds to the gate.

7:31 PM - The plane is boarding. As Tzvi walks onto the plane, he thinks about the trip ahead. After the stop in Geneva, Tzvi is going to catch a flight to Tel Aviv.

7:44 PM - The stewardess approaches Tzvi in his seat. "Excuse me sir," she says. "It appears that your ticket is not fully paid for. You will have to get off the plane." After several minutes of arguing, Tzvi is forced from the plane to reconcile his problem at the airport ticket counter.

8:09 PM - Tzvi and the people working at the ticket counter are clueless as to why the stewardess thought that his ticket wasn't paid for. The lady at the ticket counter apologizes for the confusion and returns the ticket to Tzvi.

8:15 PM - Tzvi rushes back to the gate only to realize that his plane has already begun its taxi on the runway.

8:17 PM - The plane departs JFK International Airport in a routine takeoff.

9:30 PM - Swissair Flight 111, Tzvi's intended flight, crashes several miles off the coast of Peggy's Cove, Nova Scotia.

As we stand before G-d on Yom Kippur, our lives are hanging in the balance. The severity of the situation is upon us. Will G-d seal our names in the Book of Life or the Book of Death? As we recite in the powerful prayer called unetane tokef: "On Yom Kippur it is sealed how many will pass from the earth and how many will be created, who will live and who will die." We all have sinned. In numerous prayers of penitence, we cry out to Heaven a comprehensive list of iniquities that we have committed during the past 12 months. Yet, the Torah provides us with a way out. As we state at the conclusion of the unetane tokef prayer, there are three things which will eradicate the evil decree against us: wholehearted repentance, prayer, and charity. We have the power within us to tip the scales of justice in our favor. The hour is upon us. The time to act is now.


Benyamin Cohen is editor of Torah from Dixie.

You are invited to read more Yom Kippur articles.

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