“Rosh Hashanah Yom Kippur Survival Kit” by Rabbi Shimon Apisdorf. Image courtesy of Leviathan Press

(RNS) — Rabbi Shimon Apisdorf’s more than 25-year-old book, “Rosh Hashanah Yom Kippur Survival Kit,” has a cover to which many Jewish High Holiday worshippers can relate. Dressed in their synagogue best, three men sit before stained-glass windows adorned with Stars of David. One holds his prayer book upside down, looking baffled, while his neighbor checks his watch. The third has fallen asleep with his yarmulke nearly covering his eyes.

The High Holidays, which began this year on the evening of Sept. 29, culminate in what many believe to be the judgment of who will live and who will die the following year. As dramatic as that might seem,

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