Related Blog Posts on Death and Mourning
As we head into the holiday season, I am acutely aware of how much different this year is going to be than previous ones. I will be celebrating without my mom for the first time. My mother died in January 2021, and I'm still dealing with the unexpected waves of grief that wash over me, sometimes out of nowhere. As I head into this first winter holiday season without her, I'm not quite sure I know what to expect, other than everything is going to be very different.
My mother’s answer to hate is love. When I asked her what she wishes for herself and for the world, she said, “For myself good health, so I can be good to others. For the world, peace not war. No bad person wins in the end. What did Hitler achieve?”
In the weeks preceding her passing, her children and grandchildren continued to visit her, either in person or remotely via technology. She was surrounded by her children until the very end.
Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, z”l, served as chief rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth for 22 years. This interview with him first aired on the podcast OnBeing in 2010.
Gathering in grief gives us a window into the blessings of life. Jewish tradition does this so well – which makes it all the more difficult to cope with loss in the time of COVID-19.
In a time as devastating as the COVID-19 pandemic, people heal in many different ways. For Cantor/Rabbinic Pastor Lisa Levine, healing comes in the form of music and poetry.
As the first Jewish woman to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court, Justice Ginsburg was seen as an icon not only to the progressive world but to the American Jewish community, in particular.
The Unetaneh Tokef has a long list of ways that people die, often violently, a way of shocking us into realizing our mortality. The original prayer, however, can be traumatizing. This version seeks a more empathetic approach to mortality.
If the High Holidays were to be pared down to their very essence, what are some words and phrases that might come to mind?
Belonging. Connection. Memory. An accounting of the soul.
These are just some of the words that drove the creation of the URJ