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Shemini Atzerwhat?

Dear Family and Friends,  What is Shemini Atzeret, anyway? The forgotten holiday, the   chag   whose meaning and purpose lacks clarity. It seems that we all just give up and define Shemini Atzeret as the day after Sukkot and the day before Simchat Torah.     But what if I told you that this day is arguably the culmination of the entirety of Chagei Tishrei , the high holy days of the Jewish calendar? To prove this to you, I’ll start with a story.    This story is about two people. Each of them committed a horrible crime. They spent the majority of their adult lives in penitentiaries and correctional facilities. Over the course of many years, each of these people did deep internal work to recognize their mistakes and felt a true sense of remorse. Each of them were up for parole, and a judge reviewed their cases. The judge saw their remorse, and their sincere efforts to reflect and change, but she held them back. She told them- you’ve done all the necessary work to reflect, repent, and pl

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