The skeptic’s kaddish for the atheist, 22

If I’m being honest, it’s easier to read and write about kaddish than it is to bethink myself of memories, even privately. - Me (Blog #13) At first, I thought I would study the kaddish in my father's memory to suffuse the rote with meaning, perhaps to even make it interesting. Quickly, I came to… Continue reading The skeptic’s kaddish for the atheist, 22

The skeptic’s kaddish for the atheist, 20

I heard something beautiful this week. Two of the regulars at my morning minyan completed their eleven months of kaddish, just days apart, each reciting a prayer written by Jerusalem's esteemed Rabbi Benny Lau (b. 1961) in memory of his own father. The first petitioner read softly through barely stifled sobs, but I managed to catch… Continue reading The skeptic’s kaddish for the atheist, 20

The skeptic’s kaddish for the atheist, 19

Tired. There comes a point at which the furnace begins to sputter. One seeks fuel, whereas once it was piled up everywhere. Just yesterday, it would seem, everything was aflame or imminently flammable. Would I have committed myself to this writing project if my father's death hadn't been so unexpected and sudden? If I'd been… Continue reading The skeptic’s kaddish for the atheist, 19

The skeptic’s kaddish for the atheist, 16

The kaddish d'rabbanan (the rabbis' kaddish) is recited by mourners during prayer services after sections of liturgy that take the form of Rabbinic discourse. As such, it contains a prayer for the well-being of Torah students: עַל יִשְׂרָאֵל וְעַל רַבָּנָן, To Israel, to the teachers, וְעַל תַּלְמִידֵיהוֹן their disciples וְעַל כָּל תַּלְמִידֵי תַלְמִידֵיהוֹן, and their… Continue reading The skeptic’s kaddish for the atheist, 16