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Sacred Undertaking: Embracing Life by Caring for the Dead
Sponsor Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center
Type of Event Education
Description How can we bring the power of ultimate kindness to this broken world? For centuries, every Jewish community maintained a Hevra Kadisha—literally, a “Sacred Fellowship”—whose members care for the bodies of the dead and serve as vigil-keepers until burial. Just as those who are born among us are gently washed, swaddled and watched over around the clock, we can repair the circle of life by offering the same skilled and loving care to those who die among us, taming our own fears of death in the process. This weeklong program will provide a spiritual and practical grounding in the powerful sacred traditions of honoring the dead—practices that uplift and enrich the lives of those who serve, and strengthen the bonds of human connection across generations. Offered as both a primer for beginners and a refresher for more experienced Hevra Kadisha members, this course is appropriate for clergy and laypeople alike. Through experiential exercises, sacred text study, and hands-on training in a supportive environment, participants will learn: • The core practices of the Hevra Kadisha, including sh’mirah (vigil-keeping) and taharah (ritual purification), and the range of customs that have developed over time and distance. • Traditional Jewish afterlife beliefs, and their implications for how we treat the dead today. • The work of the burial fellowship as hesed shel emet (ultimate kindness), and effective strategies for education and organizing in participants’ home communities. • Accessible melodies, chants and songs for honoring the connections between the living and the dead, and for deepening mindfulness of the precious gift of life during happier times.
Date/Dates August 22 2011 - August 28 2011
Times 3:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Cost See website for pricing
Street Address 116 Johnson Road Google Map
Location Falls Village, CT 06031 United States
Contact Information
Contact Name Registrar
Phone Number (860) 824-5991ex394
Additional Information
Religion Jewish - Transdenominational, Progressive, Pluralistic
Audience Grandparents, Men, Parents, People of All Faiths, Women
People who are interested in Spirituality, Synagogues and the Jewish Community, Death and Mourning