60 percent of Israelis intend to fast on Yom Kippur

Right-wing Israelis are far more likely to fast, pray on Yom Kippur than left-wingers.

By
October 7, 2019 17:13
1 minute read.
Eurovision Shabbat dinner Dov Lasker, an active member of the Modern Orthodox community in Tel Aviv,

Eurovision Shabbat dinner Dov Lasker, an active member of the Modern Orthodox community in Tel Aviv, prepared for visitors to the event. (photo credit: OR MALKA)

Almost two-thirds of Israeli Jews will refrain from eating and drinking on Yom Kippur, a poll done ahead of the holiday has found.

The poll also demonstrated that the political inclinations of those surveyed is a good barometer of their likelihood to observe the traditions and Jewish laws of the day, with those on the political Right far more likely to fast and pray than those on the Left.

According to a survey conducted for the Guttman Center at the Israel Democracy Institute, 60% of the Jewish Israeli population intend to fast this Yom Kippur, which starts just before sundown on Tuesday evening and ends at nightfall on Wednesday night.

Some 27% said, however, that they do not intend to fast at all. Another 5% said they intend to drink but not eat, and 7% have not yet decided whether to fast.

The figures for those fasting on Yom Kippur are similar to those in 2000, when 63% of Jewish Israelis said they would fast, but significantly lower than the 73% who said they would fast in 1994.

A much smaller number of people intend to go to synagogue on Yom Kippur, with just 23% saying they would attend all prayer services; 19% saying they would go to some services; 39% planning on not attending synagogue at all, and 12% said they would turn up to hear the shofar blasts at the end of the final prayer service of the day.

Broken down by political affinity, a whopping 76% of right-wing respondents said they would fast compared with just 25% of left-wingers, and 44% of those who defined themselves as being in the political center.

Only 7% of left-wingers said they would go to all the prayer services of the day, compared with 10% of political centrists and 32% of right-wingers. Some 13% of left-wingers said they would go to just some of the prayer services of the day, compared with 19% of political centrists and 20% of right-wingers.

The poll was conducted between October 3 and 6 among a sample of 501 Jewish men and women, with a margin of error of 4.1%.


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