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Questions tagged [death]

Questions relating to the nature, function, or process of Death in Jewish thought.

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Is hastening death of a Jew allowed for a non-Jew?

A Jew may not do anything which will hasten the death of another Jew. This is a selection from here, by Rabbi J. David Bleich (I added the bolding) The practice of euthanasia-whether active or ...
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What happens the second you die?

What do our sources say about what happens the second you die. I’m pretty sure I heard somewhere that one’s soul comes out of their body and they float around the room. Are there any fascinating ...
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Can a grandson visit his grandfather grave during the Shiva?

And put a tombal decoration (like flowers, candles) on the grave? Or should he wait after the Shiva?
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How do I know my unanswered questions will be revealed [to me] when I die?

Many times as a Jew I think in the back of my head that certain question’s answers I greatly ponder will be revealed to me when I die. I’ll give an example. A few distant relatives of mine were ...
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Is “You Shall Choose Life” ever interpreted literally?

Inspired by Did people ever place actual physical stumbling blocks before the blind? In Devarim 30:19, we are told by G-d to "choose life": This day, I call upon the heaven and the earth as ...
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Can a donation request be added to a death notice?

When a member or loved one dies, a congregation sends its members a death notice. Without asking the survivors, they add at the end: "Click here to make a donation to the congregation in memory of the ...
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Is there a need to to know the deceased's name when studying in his merit?

I have been asked many times by friends to study (usually Mishanyos) as a merit for their recently deceased relative. In most such occasions, I was given the deceased's name, in order to have them in ...
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How do you avoid 'al tiftah peh l'satan'?

There is a principle of al tiftach peh l'satan (Ketubot 8b) - literally "don't open your mouth to the Satan". How can concern for this principle be avoided when discussing possible bad future ...
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Is the mourning for a late relative dependent on the state of their relationship before death?

Are the halochos (laws) about observing mourning rituals for a relative (e.g., shiva, shloshim, etc.), affected in any way by the state of the relationship between the mourner and deceased before his ...
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What is the timeline of the connection of the soul to the body after death?

Speaking to the Rabbi who runs the chevra kadisha in my neighborhood recently, regarding the pending cremation of the mother of a friend, he mentioned several interesting concepts with respect to the ...
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386 views

After-death care of a non-Jewish relative

If a Jew has been entrusted with the after-death care of a non-Jewish relative, what should be done? Specifically, if the non-Jewish relative requested to be cremated after death, can or should a Jew ...
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what is the nature of future visions which never come to be?

In a number of places chazal describe someone, for our purposes we will dub the 'seer' as seeing the future descendants of certain people, such as Moshe before he killed the Egyptian or Elisha before ...
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Are there any merits which delay the adulterer's explosion?

In mSotah 5:1 it states that the Sotah waters check the woman and her presumed consort. I assume this 'checking' leads to the consort suffering the same death as the woman. The talmud further states ...
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Location for medrash cited by the Chizkuni

The Chizkuni in Parshas Achrei Mos 16:22 writes that the ish iti (the person who would take the goat to har azazel) would not live through the year. He cites from a medrash that the person knew he was ...
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How to handle cadavers which are highly likely to be Jewish

This question How to handle cadavers asked what should be done where a student had to handle cadavers in their medical (dentistry) classes. A comment took the view that outside of Israel, the ...
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Death penalty convict status

If a Jewish woman is married to a Jewish man, and she has been sentenced to death or declared a resident of a Rebellious City, but not yet been executed, is she considered technically "dead" to the ...
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Should I rend k'riyah if I witness the death of a non-relative? If so, what's the procedure?

In another question, Chalutznahal cites Yoreh De'ah 340:5, which says that when I witness a fellow Jew die, I must rend my shirt out of sadness. And British Rabbi Dr. Moshe Freedman brings this down ...
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Source for Higher Infant Mortality Rates in the Winter of a Leap Year?

At the shiva for my infant son, someone said that the reason we say kaparat pesha in mussaf rosh chodesh, is that to atone for the sins that cause higher rates of stillbirth, miscarriages, and infant ...
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How much is one obligated to hold a will?

This is a completely uncharted area for me. For example, a father requests his sons to continue a business, or to stay in the same town, or not to leave the country, or to wear white socks, or to ...
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Why is dreaming of getting married considered a disturbance?

I know that this is a pretty mystical question, but is anyone able to provide an explanation as to why the Shulchan Aruch (OH 288:5) says that seeing oneself get married in a dream is considered bad ...
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Will I lose out by not having grandchildren named after me?

Someone has a very strange Jewish name and he doesn't want to trouble his children to feel pressured to name their children after him when he passes away. He also feels bad that a grandchild should ...
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Proof that calling upon deceased righteous people is polythiesm

My assumption is that in the Jewish faith, if someone were to call upon a righteous person who is not alive for help, that would be considered polytheism. Are there any explicit verses in the Torah ...
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Why does Samuel turn to leave and then kill agag?

In Samuel I 15:27 Samuel turns to leave then Saul admits guilt, asks for forgiveness, and prostrates, and then Samuel summons Agag and kills him. It seems that had Saul not stopped Samuel, he would ...
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Kaddish for non-blood relatives

Does one say kaddish for a non-blood relative such as (chas v'shalom) a daughter-in-law? I know that a husband says kaddish when the parent of his wife passes away, but my understanding is that this ...
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Is it a good sign or a bad sign to face downwards upon one’s death?

Kesuvos 103b says: תניא מת מתוך השחוק סימן יפה לו מתוך הבכי סימן רע לו פניו למעלה סימן יפה לו פניו למטה סימן רע לו פניו [...] It was taught in a Braisa: One who dies amidst laughter, it’s a ...
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Is one required to honor his deceased father's wishes if in conflict?

I had heard that when there is a conflict of requests between father and mother, a son should defer to his father first. Does this rule apply if the father is dead but the mother is still alive? I.e.,...
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50 views

The phase between death and resurrection comparable to sleeping?

Tehillim 13:4 talks about the the sleep of death (אִישַׁן הַמָּוֶת), Yeshayahu 26:19 reads something like my dead bodies shall arise--awake and sing, ye that dwell in the dust (הָקִיצוּ), Daniel 12:2 ...
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The kittel as tachrich

I recently heard and was extremely moved by the idea that the kitlen worn on Pesach, Yom Kippur, and under the chuppah are intended to resemble tachrichim -- and are, in some cases, the actual ...
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Can you be buried with tzedokoh receipts?

When you pass away can you request to get buried with your tzedokoh receipts? Will the burial people allow it? Is it worth it, I know everything gets recorded by God, but I've heard stories of people ...
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Before the sin, would it have been possible to be murdered?

We know that before the chet (sin) of the eating of the forbidden fruit, mankind would not physically expire and die. (Death was the punishment given for the sin - B'reishis 3:19, Shabbos 55, Ramban 2:...
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Ramban's perception on death

I read Rav Gifter's biography, where he states the following: The Ramban, in his introduction to Iyov, asks a question: “Why do we cry at a moment of death? “Why do we shed tears? This is the natural ...
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How long does one say Kaddish for a sibling?

There is discussion here about saying Kaddish for parents and also some discussion on Kaddish for a sister. One place on the Chabad website states that Kaddish should be said for 30 days for a sibling ...
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Can non jews give death penalty for something other then the 7 laws of noah

Can non jews give death penalty for something other then the 7 laws of noah? Source and clarification (in what cases) please
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Will there still be gehinom after Mashiach?

Apart for those who are destined to no share in the world to come, will tzadikim or even average people who go to olam habah after Mashaich comes have to go to gehinom to cleanse their sins? Or will ...
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Do you have to follow all of your parents' wishes after their death?

I am not sure what the extent is of honoring your parents after their death. Do you have to honor all their wishes (except for those that violate Torah law, which you would need to disobey even while ...
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Can a village / shtetl rabbi require the merchants to close their shops for a funeral?

I'm trying to help a co-worker decipher some history about his great grandfather. He showed me a picture of a poster - notice written in Hebrew that announced the funeral of his great grandfather. In ...
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Spiritual Causes For The Black Death?

From Wiki “The Black Death was one of the most devastating pandemics in human history, resulting in the deaths of an estimated 75 to 200 million people in Eurasia and peaking in Europe in the years ...
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Why do we cry at shivah houses?

The Midrash in Koheles Rabbah (7:4 in the Warsaw numbering) writes (translation follows Artscroll, chapter 7, page 31): נולד אדם הכל שמחין מת הכל בוכין. ואינו כן אלא נולד אדם ואין שמחין לו שאין ...
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Hand-me-downs from a dead person

What's the story with using the clothing/shoes of a person who died? Does Jewish custom forbid such a thing?
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Covering the face of a dead person

It appears to me that many Jews are careful to cover the face of a dead person as soon as the person dies. What is the reason for this? Is there a halacha that requires this? Or is it just a minhag? ...
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Davening for the demise of the wicked

Is it a mitzvah,permissible, forbidden to daven for a Jewish wicked person to die? If the wicked person is someone who is trying convert Jews to Christianity would that make a difference? I am looking ...
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Chevra Kaddisha string locations

I recently did a tahara and I was curious about where a lot of the practices came from and what the meaning behind them is. One thing we did was we tied strings around various locations of the ...
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Did the ancient Rabbanim believe that the spirits of the dead walked the Earth?

In the Midrashim I noticed that Rabbanim keep mentioning events in which the Rabbi would be walking along and come across a man doing some task and it would turn out to be the spirit of a dead man who ...
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In what aspects is sleep considered 1/60th of death?

אש אחד מששים לגיהנם... דבש אחד מששים למן שבת אחד מששים לעולם הבא שינה אחד מששים למיתה חלום אחד מששים לנבואה ...sleep is one-sixtieth of death (Brochos 57b) In what aspects is sleep ...
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Sephardi burial in a talit

In the Shulchan Aruch (YD 351), the Mechebar writes that a man is buried in a talit with tzitzit, and the Rema adds that the tzitzit are made posul. Some googling (as well as checking with my local ...
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Which Rabbi asked for his funerals to be joyful?

I think all is in the question. I think it's Rabbi Akiva but not sure... I am also looking for sources saying funerals should be joyful.