First a word about Windows 7 this Fall 2019:

This tech issue won’t affect most of you in 2019, as most of you (Apple folks aside) have laptops made after Windows 7, most of you should be running Windows 10 for some time now. For you Windows 7 would be way behind the times. But many large corporations and state agencies are still running Windows 7 because they never wanted to make the upgrade to 8 (which wasn’t a stable operating system) and just kept it at Windows 7. Remember, cash registers and data entry machines are computers, too, but don’t need all the bells and whistles that individual consumers crave. Stability and reliability is the most important thing. But as of January 2020 Microsoft will no longer be supporting Windows 7. No patches, no updates, no security fixes, no drivers. That forces all Windows 7 users to update to Windows 10 by the end of 2019. Think of what this means to a large supermarket chain or a state agency with thousands of terminals and computers on board. It is a major system upgrade. But they have no choice. Windows 7 is no longer an option.

Now about Rosh Hashanah:

According to Kabbalah and Chassidic teaching, G-d’s investment and commitment to our world is on an annual basis. A contract that runs one year at a time. Each year on Rosh Hashanah the contract is up for review and thankfully renewed. Think of it as planned obsolescence, the way that manufacturers of phones and cars and appliances keep us coming back for more, nothing is meant to last forever, so too, the one-year contract has us coming back to the table each Rosh Hashanah, and renews G-d’s investment and commitment to us and our world. 

More than a renewal, it’s an upgrade!

But back to the Windows 7 concept, each new year is more than just a contract renewal, it’s an upgrade. This year at Rosh Hashanah we downloaded and installed version 5780. And there are features and opportunities and fixes in 5780 that weren’t available in version 5779. Windows 7 doesn’t work forever, you have to take it up to the next level, we are forced to upgrade. Same with Rosh Hashanah. It’s not enough to keep up the same old. We have to download the next version, we have to take it to the next level. Let’s find one Mitzvah, or one area of focus in which to improve, increase, add or change as version 5780 is installed. 

About upgrades and how much needs to change, there’s this perspective we got from a simple but beautiful blessing in a Monsey Kosher eatery

This explains the long prayers…

One of the big questions on everyone’s mind is why so many pages? Why is the High Holiday Machzor prayer so long? But think of it as a system install! Not only are we installing a new program or app but a total overhaul, it’s a new Operating System version 5780. That takes time! You know how such installs go… you’re watching the screen go from 23% to 28% and then it goes stuck at 37% forever, and finally it jumps to 56% and on. It’s a big deal because the install is deleting old files, installing new ones, finding corrupted or missing files and moving files from one place to another. And so, too, on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, it takes time because of the download and install of the new Operating System version for the new year!