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The Neshamah Should Have an Aliyah

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The Neshamah Should Have an Aliyah

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The Neshamah Should Have an Aliyah
What You Can Do in Memory of a Departed Love One
By Rabbi Tzvi Hebel
Judaica Press, Inc., 2009
In Conjunction with Chevrah Lomdei Mishnah
ISBN: 978-1-60763-015-9

Reviewed by Boris Segel - March 22, 2010

When a loved one dies, we sit Shiva, and say Kaddish, and yearly keep Yahrtzeit, but is that all we can do for the departed? Is there a way to continue to keep our connection with the departed active? Are there things we should be doing for the I'iluy nishmas (elevation of the soul of the departed)? Are there ways to keep the memory of your loved one alive that are positive and fulfilling for all involved? The Neshamah Should Have an Aliyah, by Rabbi Tzvi Hebel answers these questions and many more. Most important, Rabbi Hebel clearly outlines the numerous, practical ways, in which you can help to keep the memory of your departed love ones alive, while also providing merit for their souls!

This auspicious book is divided into two parts. Part one The Soul's Journey examines the purpose of mourning and how we can channel our sorrow and feelings of loss into positive, spiritually uplifting avenues that will be rewarding not only to the departed, but also to those in mourning. The second part encompasses the bulk of the book. Part two of this book, What You Can Do - A Practical Guide offers detailed overviews of the varied ways in which you can honor the departed, as well as providing additional resources and guidance on how to accomplish each task and to learn more about these practices. Some of the many activities covered in this volume include Torah study, giving Tzedakah (charity), doing acts of Chessed (kindness), adopting a Mitzvah, prayer, creating memorials (which ranged from erecting a matzeivah (tombstone) to naming a baby after the departed, and walking in the Orach Mishor (righteous path). Rabbi Hebel also offers advice on how to enhance the day of the Yahrtzeit - with prayers, study, visiting the Kever (grave), and more. He also examines the various practices associated with the Yahrtzeit, and what the observance of this day means - both halachicly (legally) and spiritually. Mishnoyos for each letter of the aleph-beis are also provided, in both Hebrew and in English translation.

To the best of my knowledge, this is the only book of its kind that is available in English. It was published in conjunction with Chevrah Lomdei Mishnah, an organization based in Lakewood, New Jersey, which makes arrangement for the study of Torah and Mishnah, for the sake of, and in memory of, those that are departed. Within the pages of The Neshamah Should Have an Aliyah you will find countless ways to aid your loves ones who have departed, and to keep there memory alive for those who mourn their loss.

The Neshamah Should Have an Aliyah is a unique and highly inspirational book. I never imagined all the ways in one could aid those who have passed away. This unique resource, is further enhanced by the inclusion of a CD that contains a special presentation by Rabbi Yissocher Frand and Rabbi Paysach Krohn, entitled Providing Eternal Merit. Whether you have recently lost a loved one, or have been dealing with a loss for years, you will find that The Neshamah Should Have an Aliyah will provide you with invaluable guidance and inspiration that will forever change how you connect with those in your life who have passed away.


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