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Tag: A Strange And Fearful Interest: Death, Mourning, And Memory In The American Civil War

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  • Mom’s last day

    By Rabbi Mike Comins

    November 1, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    A test of emunah (trust, faith), according to prominent voices in our tradition (Mishna Berachot 9:2), is the ability to bless the bad, as well as the good. Upon hearing of the death of a loved one, can one say, baruch dayan emet (blessed be the truthful judge.) And might one add,...
  • Farewell, my beloved Mom

    By Lewis Groner

    April 26, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    My mother's body laid lifeless in front of me, wrapped thickly in a sheet and resting on a table in plain view. Her head and her feet were nearly indistinguishable.

    I approached the rabbi to perform the traditional keriah, the ritual tearing of a mourner's garment. He cut a small...
  • Turn Memory Into Blessing

    By Rabbi Anne Brener

    April 5, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    Holidays bring up feelings and memories about people who have died. They also offer opportunities to address unresolved issues. The four Yizkor services and the themes of their days correspond to different tasks of mourning.

    Yizkor provides temporal focal points where the new people...

  • Sitting relationship shiva

    By Shep Koster

    February 15, 2007 | 7:00 pm

    The voice on the other end of the cell phone stopped me cold: "I'm engaged."

    I couldn't breathe. My worst nightmare was happening. My ex-girlfriend -- the one I still hadn't gotten over, the one I still imagined having kids with -- was getting married. How could I not have seen it...

  • The great (non) depression

    By Rabbi Anne Brener

    November 30, 2006 | 7:00 pm

    I overdid it yesterday. Perhaps I misjudged the line between exhaustion and sloth.

    Or perhaps my recuperation from the cancer treatment requires a slower return to fitness than yesterday's exertion.

    But this morning's desire to stay in bed needs to be honored, unlike yesterday's,...

  • Who Is A Jew?

    By Rob Eshman

    August 10, 2006 | 8:00 pm

    If you're not Mel Gibson, who correctly guessed that the Malibu sheriff's deputy arresting him at 2 a.m. was, in fact, Jewish -- what are the odds? -- you might want a foolproof tip to discern who's a Jew.

    Here's a hint: the first-person plural. Start up a discussion of the war in...

  • Not Supposed to Be This Way

    By Caroline Cobrin

    April 6, 2006 | 8:00 pm

    "I really loved your story," Tante Mina said to me in a nearly inaudible gasp.

    She looked at me and it gave me hope, for her eyes still held that sparkle, that fight, that desire to live. As I walked out of the critical care unit of the hospital to let the next family member into...

  • Mourning Abed

    By Glenn Yago

    December 29, 2005 | 7:00 pm

    Earlier this month, three California Jews -- all of us strong supporters of Israel -- established a scholarship fund to honor a Palestinian patriot. He was murdered in the terrorist attack in Amman, Jordan, in November, since which time we've been joined by many other prominent...

  • Happy Non-Anniversary

    By Michael Rose

    September 29, 2005 | 8:00 pm

    I know that I was angry at L. I remember feeling frustrated and sad, not so much over L., but about the life we had envisioned, that I had started to view as a reality. I found myself mourning the losses that never were -- theoretical, suppositional losses -- the honeymoon we would...


    By Abby Gilad

    July 28, 2005 | 8:00 pm

    Schmooze About Tammuz

    We have now entered the period Jews call "The Three Weeks." These are the weeks between two fast days: one is the 17th of Tammuz (the day the walls of Jerusalem were breached) and the other is Tisha B'av, the ninth of Av, the day the Romans destroyed our...

  • Saying Goodbye to an Angel in Sin City

    By Teresa Strasser

    December 30, 2004 | 7:00 pm


    Mr. Snead has an artificially orange comb-forward and the type of throaty voice and desiccated face one only acquires after living in the desert for awhile. He is an undertaker.

    On his forearm, I make out what are obviously two prison tattoos; one reads "Love" and the other is...

  • Can One Imagine Another Herzl Arising?

    By Leonard Fein

    December 23, 2004 | 7:00 pm


    The funeral took place in Vienna on July 7, 1904. The stunning announcement had come on the 4th: Theodore Herzl, dead at age 44.

    Here is Stefan Zweig's description of the day:

    "A strange day it was, a day in July, unforgettable to all who were there to see it. Because suddenly at...

  • Your Letters

    September 16, 2004 | 8:00 pm

    Quite a Show

    That was quite a show the Jewish Republican Coalition put on at the Republican Convention with the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the New York Jewish Federation and other Jewish organizations participating and singing the praises of our president as a great...

  • Israel Buries Beersheba Bombing Victims

    By Dina Kraft

    September 2, 2004 | 8:00 pm

    Avital Etash stares out from the front pages of Israel's newspapers, a 4-year-old boy in a striped shirt and dark blue kippah, his dark eyes wide and curious.

    Etash was the youngest of 16 people killed in Tuesday's double suicide bombing in Beersheba. His mother lies in the...

  • How to Approach   a Grieving Jew

    By Michal Lemberger

    August 12, 2004 | 8:00 pm

    "Consolation: The Spiritual Journey Beyond Grief" by Rabbi Maurice Lamm (Jewish Publication Society, $30).

    Grief erases all regular rules. All the logic that has ever seemed to govern one's life suddenly seems useless. More than useless, it seems pointless. In death, we are all...

  • by Abby Gilad

    March 4, 2004 | 7:00 pm


    Why do we wear costumes and masks on Purim? Well, it could be to remind us that Queen Esther hid her Jewish identity from King Ahasuerus. Because of that, she was able to save the Jewish people. It could be a way for us to turn the world upside down for a little while, in the...

  • Yeladim

    By Abby Gilad

    May 1, 2003 | 8:00 pm

    Every year on the fifth of the Hebrew month Iyar (that day falls this year on May 7), Israel celebrates Israeli Independence Day to commemorate the founding of the State of Israel in 1948. Parties and parades are held all over Israel and the United States. Yom HaAtzmaut comes after...
  • Kids Page

    By Abby Gilad

    April 30, 2003 | 8:00 pm

    Days of Sorrow and Joy

    Every year on the fifth of the Hebrew month Iyar (that day falls this year on May 7), Israel celebrates Israeli Independence Day to commemorate the founding of the State of Israel in 1948. Parties and parades are held all over Israel and the United States....

  • Ramon Memorialized Across America

    By Rachel Pomerance

    February 6, 2003 | 7:00 pm

    The groundswell of emotion in response to Ilan Ramon's death has not only been a great inspiration for American Jews, it also has helped strengthen the bond Americans feel for Israel.

    "It's a state of mourning for the whole nation. Our school is no different," said Joseph "J.P."...

  • Sadness and Joy Mix on Mitzvah Day

    By Julie Brown

    February 6, 2003 | 7:00 pm

    It was supposed to have been a happy day. Strangely enough, it was. Last Sunday, more than 500 members of the South Bay Jewish community gathered to celebrate our fourth annual Mitzvah Day.

    In this far-flung community, home to about 40,000 Jews, the event has become a time when we...

  • Death Stalks Family

    By Tom Tugend

    December 5, 2002 | 7:00 pm

    A local American Israeli family, which lost a daughter in an airport shooting rampage last July 4, is in renewed mourning for a son who died Nov. 26 following a car accident.

    Nimrod Hen, the 18-year-old victim, was the brother of Victoria "Vicky" Hen, 25. She was one of two people...

  • Families Mourn Loss

    By Tom Tugend

    July 11, 2002 | 8:00 pm

    The Israeli community, joined by the city's mayor and Jewish leaders, bade a grief-stricken farewell Sunday to a man and woman killed by an Egyptian-born gunman at Los Angeles International Airport July 4.

    In the morning, more than 800 mourners filled the parking lot in front of Yad...

  • For These Things, I Do Weep

    By Amy Klein

    July 4, 2002 | 8:00 pm

    This coming week begins "the nine days," the period of intense mourning leading up to Tisha B'av, the fast of Av, which takes place on the following Thursday, July 18.

    It is said that throughout history, during the nine days (and the current "three weeks" between the fast of the...

  • Rallying Support

    By Tom Tugend

    June 7, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    Two dozen colorfully dressed fourth- and fifth-graders from the Pressman Academy, waving small Israeli flags, welcomed Israel's President Moshe Katsav and his wife Gila with Hebrew songs as they arrived Monday evening at the Beverly Hills Hotel.

    An hour later, in the hotel's Crystal...

  • History in the Making

    By Naomi Segal

    March 23, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    By the time the transplant team approached Doris Ullendorf and Ken Gorfinkle, they had already talked about donating the organs of their first-born son.

    They knew that Ari, who until 48 hours before had been a perfectly healthy 16-month-old, was brain dead, killed by some mysterious...

  • Still Dead

    By Marlene Adler Marks

    May 7, 1998 | 8:00 pm

    My friend Jane and I met for dinner last week andhad a good laugh about death. California's political campaign seasonis just commencing, and we were discussing, in an offhand way, whatmy husband, an attorney, might have made of an upcoming ballotproposition were he still among us.


  • The Only Holiday Hallmark Hasn’t Designed a Card For

    September 11, 1997 | 8:00 pm

    Tisha B'Av, the day of mourning in commemoration of the destruction of the two Temples, is notable for at least two reasons. For one, it may be the only holiday that Hallmark hasn't designed a card for. And it seems to be the one holiday that most Jews have heard of, but few seem to...
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