Jewish Views of the Afterlife

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9781568219387: Jewish Views of the Afterlife
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In Jewish Views of the Afterlife, Simcha Paull Raphael guides the reader through 4,000 years of Jewish thought on the afterlife by investigating pertinent sacred texts produced in each era. Through a compilation of ideas found in the Bible, Apocrypha, rabbinic literature, medieval philosophy, medieval Midrash, Kabbalah, and Hasidism, the reader learns how Judaism conceived of the fate of the individual after death throughout Jewish history.

In the wake of the horrifying deaths of six million Jews in the Holocaust, many turned away from Judaism and shunned a God who had seemingly allowed this senseless act of cruelty to occur. Others turned toward the faith, desperately wanting to believe in the doctrine that those whose lives had ended prematurely had passed on to another a better life.

But does an afterlife even exist? What role does it play in Jewish theology? While many affirm a belief in the afterlife, a scarce few are aware of where these teachings can be found in Jewish literature.

Among the topics discussed in this fascinating volume are heaven and hell, Olam Ha-Ba (The World to Come), Gan Eden, resurrection of the dead, immortality of the soul, and divine judgment prior to death.

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About the Author:

Simcha Paull Raphael received a doctorate in psychology from the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco and ordination as a rabbinic pastor from Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi. He teaches in the Department of Religion at La Salle University, and serves as a spiritual director at Reconstructionist Rabbinical College. Dr. Rapahel is also in private practice as a psychotherapist specializing in bereavement, affiliated with Mount Airy Counseling Center. He resides in the Philadelphia area.

Review:

Simcha Paull Raphael has performed an act of resurrection. He has restored the rich heritage of Jewish thought about life after death that has been repressed, disdained, or ignored for so long and he has made the heritage accessible for the first time toa new generation of Jews. His timing could not be better. This book arrives at a time when there is a Jewish renewal movement springing up that has new questions and that is in search of new perspectives on what life is really all about. It comes at a time when there is a new awareness of cosmology, a new curiosity about mysticism, and a new understanding of the nature of matter and energy. All these things come together to create a community that will be receptive to this book. There is enormous scholarship here, but even more important than the facts and the footnotes that it contains, there is a sense that this is a writer who writes out of his won innermost concerns. He is not just an archaeologist digging up the beliefs of his ancestors; he is a pathfinder pointing the way for many who want to learn. (Rabbi Jack Riemer, editor of The World of the High Holy Days and So That Your Values Live On )

[Raphael] traces, in a synoptic style, 4,000 years of Jewish thought on the afterlife by investigating pertinent sacred texts produced in each era. From the Bible, Apocrypha, rabbinic literature, medieval philosophy, medieval Midrash, Kabbalah, and Hasidism, the reader learns how Judaism conceived of the fate of the individual after death throughout Jewish history. (Journal Of Nietzsche Studies )

Simcha Paull Raphael has performed an act of resurrection. He has restored the rich heritage of Jewish thought about life after death that has been repressed, disdained, or ignored for so long and he has made the heritage accessible for the first time to a new generation of Jews.His timing could not be better. This book arrives at a time when there is a Jewish renewal movement springing up that has new questions and that is in search of new perspectives on what life is really all about. It comes at a time when there is a new awareness of cosmology, a new curiosity about mysticism, and a new understanding of the nature of matter and energy. All these things come together to create a community that will be receptive to this book.There is enormous scholarship here, but even more important than the facts and the footnotes that it contains, there is a sense that this is a writer who writes out of his won innermost concerns. He is not just an archaeologist digging up the beliefs of his ancestors; he is a pathfinder pointing the way for many who want to learn. (Rabbi Jack Riemer, editor of The World of the High Holy Days and So That Your Values Live On )

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780742562219: Jewish Views of the Afterlife

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ISBN 10:  0742562212 ISBN 13:  9780742562219
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2009
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9780742562202: Jewish Views of the Afterlife

Rowman..., 2009
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9780876685839: Jewish Views of the Afterlife

Jason ..., 1994
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