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Is there a standard expression used to greet or comfort those who are celebrating an anniversary of mourning? (...and why is it said?)

Even if not, what should one say? (...and why?)

We should merit to live till the days of Moshiach

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The most common expression I have heard - "May the neshama have an aliyah".

The concept is that while the physical body remains in the earth, the dead person's neshama (soul) should rise to Gan Eden, and this is based on the person's merits. See www.jewishanswers.org for details. (I'll edit the full link, later, B"N.)

  • What does it mean "may her neshama have an aliyah"? What type of aliyah? – Yehuda W Dec 26 '16 at 14:38
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In Britain (certainly in Scotland) many ashkenazim say "you should have a long life" (not said as some kind of irony when being said to the one commemorating the yahrzeit but said in recognition of the mitvza of kibud av va'aym (honoring one's parents) which is reflected in their observance of their p'tira (passing) ).

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Some say in Yiddish

די נשמה זול האבען אן עלייה

May the neshama have an aliyah

  • Except for the language, this duplicates my answer. – DanF Jul 7 '16 at 17:04
  • But the language is the main addition. The OP asked what people say. This is what people say. So you disagree? – Shoel U'Meishiv Jul 7 '16 at 17:06
  • OK. I see there is a difference between "saying" and "meaning". I see that there is a reason why you chose "mefaresh" as your ID :-) – DanF Jul 7 '16 at 17:08

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