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What is the Reason? Fasting for Atonement Print E-mail

Ask-The-Rabbi-Reasons-JewishI have read that fasting is an important step in achieving atonement for many things, and that some sins need a hundred fasts. I have difficulty fasting. I heard that there are many forms of fasting. Can you list a few? Would they count as fasting for atonement? MS


Rabbi Moshe Leib of Sassov writes that each time a person with a temper controls his anger, it is worth more than a thousand fasts. I don’t know how to calculate how many fasts controlling one’s temper is worth, but I suspect that a person who has sinned in anger can count each time he controls his temper with the intention that it be counted as a fast, would qualify.

There is also a Ta’anit Dibbur, a Speech Fast. The person only speaks words of prayer, blessings and Torah, or whatever is absolutely necessary to say. I suspect that such fasts can be counted.

The Tosher Rebbe shlit”a told me that avoiding a single food that one loves, for me it was Reeses Peanut Butter Cups, can count as a fast.

The Sefer Chasidim (#155) writes that a single Mitzvah performed overcoming the Evil Inclination is worth more than 100 Mitzvot performed without an internal struggle. I suggest that you choose the Mitzvot over which you have the fiercest struggles and perform them, and each will count as more than a fast.

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