Teshuvah or Tesjuvah – Elul
The Hebrew word Teshuvah is usually translated as repentance.
In fact, there is a well known prayer recited on the High Holy Days that Teshuvah, Tefillah, and Tzedakah, translated as “Repentance,” “Prayer,” and “Charity” can avert (turn a way or turn aside) the evil decree.
Teshuvah is better translated as “return” and signifies a return to the original state.
Classically, Teshuvah is comprised of three ingredients:
1: regret of misdeed,
2: decision to change,
3: and verbal expression of one’s sins.
Technically, whenever one sins, one is mandated to do Teshuvah.
However, the Ten Days of Teshuvah between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur are specifically designated for Teshuvah, when the gates of prayer and repentance are more open than at any other time during the cyclical Jewish year.
40 days of Teshuvah:
The last 10 days;
The last ten days are the days when the Holy presence of Teshuvah climaxes to its highest pitch.
During those ten days; the books of judgement in the Heavenly Court room are open, and they are also closed during those ten days.