So That Your Values Live On: Ethical Wills and How to Prepare Them

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9781879045071: So That Your Values Live On: Ethical Wills and How to Prepare Them

With this book, anyone, from any tradition, can write an ethical will.

Words that come from the heart enter the heart.” Many of these wills come from plain ordinary fathers and mothers, yet they touch the hearts of all who read them. And so I suggest that you read these wills, and then that you try your hand at writing one of your own. If you do, you will leave a gift to the future, and the not-yet-born children of your children’s children will thank you and bless you for it.
from the Introduction

Ethical wills are precious spiritual documents, windows into the souls of those who write them.

Those who write ethical wills―often parents writing letters to their children or grandparents to their grandchildren―try to sum up what they have learned in life, and what they want most for, and from, their loved ones.

In this unique combination of “What Is” and “How To,” Riemer and Stampfer show how to prepare an ethical will and provide as guides examples of ethical wills written by almost 100 famous and ordinary people. This wide range of contemporary ethical wills reveals the ongoing relevance of ethical wills for people of all faiths, all backgrounds.

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From the Publisher:

This remarkable volume will enrich all those who will read it and meditate upon its infinite wisdom.
Elie Wiesel

About the Author:

Rabbi Jack Riemer, a well-known author and speaker, has conducted many workshops and seminars to help people learn about the inspiring tradition of ethical wills and to prepare their own. He is rabbi of Congregation Beth Tikvah in Boca Raton, Florida, and the head of the National Rabbinic Network, a support system for rabbis across all denominational lines. He is editor of The World of the High Holy Days (Bernie Books) and Wrestling with the Angel (Schocken).

Rabbi Jack Riemer is available to speak on the following topics:

  • So That Your Values Live On
  • The Ethics of Fund Raising
  • Wisdom For the End of Life
  • David, Bathsheba and Woody Allen
  • Portrait of Elijah


Dr. Nathaniel Stampfer served Spertus Institute for many years as dean, vice president for academic affairs and professor of Jewish education.

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Published by U.S.A.: Jewish Lights (1991)
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