Today's neurology has caught up with yesterday's science fiction. Maps have been drawn up of the interior of our skull. Virtually every hillock and groove has been tagged: tweak this neuron-transmitter, and you'll hear lyrics of a song you haven't heard or remembered in 30 years; pinch that nerve ending, and you'll zap your craving for potato chips and lose 15 pounds in a month. Well, not quite. But we're getting there.

The year, a body of time with 365 organs and limbs, also has a brain — the 48 hours of Rosh Hashanah. That's what the Hebrew words rosh hashanah literally mean — "head of the year." On Rosh Hashanah, we crown G‑d King. On Rosh Hashanah, G‑d is aroused, once again, with the desire to create the world. Channels of vitality and awareness connect the 48 hours of Rosh Hashanah to each of the hundreds of days, thousands of hours and millions of seconds of the year, like those that join the brain to its body.

That's why the two days of Rosh Hashanah are so special: the impact of our every action, word and thought increases thousand-fold. If we're kind on Rosh Hashanah, we'll be kinder people throughout the year. If we weigh our words carefully during these two days, our speech will be more refined throughout the year. If we focus on a certain weakness of ours and resolve to make a stronger effort, we'll find our resolution translating into action far more effectively than resolutions made at other times.

If you can access the brain, you can do just about anything. You can waken memories, restore lapsed talents, alleviate fears, magnify joys, abolish prejudices, stimulate interest and charge up motivation. You can basically re-program your life, at least for a year.