Rites and Ceremonies of Jews
Saying Kaddish: How to Comfort the Dying, Bury the Dead, and Mourn as a Jew
Saying Kaddish
How to Comfort the Dying, Bury the Dead, and Mourn as a Jew
Paperback      ISBN: 0805210881
The definitive guide to Judaism's end-of-life rituals, revised and updated for Jews of all backgrounds and beliefs

From caring for the dying to honoring the dead, Anita Diamant explains the Jewish practices that make mourning a loved one an opportunity to experience the full range of emotions--grief, anger, fear, guilt, relief--and take comfort in the idea that the memory of the deceased is bound up in our lives and actions.

In Saying Kaddish you will find suggestions for conducting a funeral and for observing the shiva week, the shloshim month, the year of Kaddish, the annual yahrzeit, and the Yizkor service. There are also chapters on coping with particular losses--such as the death of a child and suicide--and on children as mourners, mourning non-Jewish loved ones, and the bereavement that accompanies miscarriage.

Diamant also offers advice on how to apply traditional views of the sacredness of life to hospice and palliative care. Reflecting the ways that ancient rituals and customs have been adapted in light of contemporary wisdom and needs, she includes updated sections on taharah (preparation of the body for burial) and on using ritual immersion in a mikveh to mark the stages of bereavement. And, celebrating a Judaism that has become inclusive and welcoming. Diamant highlights rituals, prayers, and customs that will be meaningful to Jews-by-choice, Jews of color, and LGBTQ Jews. Concluding chapters discuss Jewish perspectives on writing a will, creating healthcare directives, making final arrangements, and composing an ethical will.
Bar/Bat Mitzvah Basics 2/E: A Practical Family Guide to Coming of Age Together
Bar/Bat Mitzvah Basics 2/E
A Practical Family Guide to Coming of Age Together
2nd Edition    Paperback      ISBN: 1580231519

How to manage the process with grace, joy and good sense.

A practical guide that gives parents and teens the "how-to" information they need to navigate the bar/bat mitzvah process and grow as a family through this experience. For the first time in one book, everyone directly involved offers practical insights into how the process can be made easier and more enjoyable for all. Rabbis, cantors and Jewish educators from the Reform, Conservative and Reconstructionist movements, parents, and even teens speak from their own experience.
- What's it all about?
- Preparation for Parent and Child
- Tutoring, stress, expectations, enjoyment, planning for children with special needs
- Negotiating the ceremony and celebration
- Designing a creative service, heightening the spiritual exercise, special issues related to divorced and interfaith families, planning a party that neither breaks the bank nor detracts from the inherent spirituality of the event.

Bar/Bat Mitzvah Basics 2/E: A Practical Family Guide to Coming of Age Together
Bar/Bat Mitzvah Basics 2/E
A Practical Family Guide to Coming of Age Together
Hardcover      ISBN: 1681629836

How to manage the process with grace, joy and good sense.

A practical guide that gives parents and teens the "how-to" information they need to navigate the bar/bat mitzvah process and grow as a family through this experience. For the first time in one book, everyone directly involved offers practical insights into how the process can be made easier and more enjoyable for all. Rabbis, cantors and Jewish educators from the Reform, Conservative and Reconstructionist movements, parents, and even teens speak from their own experience.
- What's it all about?
- Preparation for Parent and Child
- Tutoring, stress, expectations, enjoyment, planning for children with special needs
- Negotiating the ceremony and celebration
- Designing a creative service, heightening the spiritual exercise, special issues related to divorced and interfaith families, planning a party that neither breaks the bank nor detracts from the inherent spirituality of the event.

The Book of Jewish Customs
The Book of Jewish Customs
Paperback      ISBN: 1568216084

Have you ever wondered why the groom breaks a glass at a Jewish wedding? Did you know that a traditional Jewish funeral requires a coffin made of plain wood with no nails? Are you curious as to why, in a Jewish house of mourning, the mirrors are usually covered? Do you know why a six-pointed star is considered a "Jewish star"? These and hundreds of other Jewish customs, practices, expressions, and symbols are explained and explored in Harvey Lutske's delightful volume, The Book of Jewish Customs. Why do Jewish men often wear headcoverings? What is the significance of the sidecurls grown by many pious Jews? Did you know that Star Trek's Mr. Spock displayed a hand sign that has been used by Jews for centuries? Have you ever heard someone say "pooh pooh pooh" and wondered what it meant? The Book of Jewish Customs is a charming often funny, always informative volume, rich with history and filled with ideas. Harvey Lutske has combed the literature, from the Bible and the Talmud through contemporary sources, to discover the meaning and reasons behind common Jewish folkways that we often are familiar with but whose origins we may not know.

Building Blocks of the Soul: Studies on the Letters and Words of the Hebrew Language
Building Blocks of the Soul
Studies on the Letters and Words of the Hebrew Language
Hardcover      ISBN: 1568219326

In this intensive study of Hebrew letters and words, Rabbi Matityahu Glazerson uses gematria (interpretive Jewish numerology) to reveal the mysterious correlation between Jewish ethics and practices and the numeric values of Hebrew words which name and describe them. This profound and lucid exploration uncovers the deep spiritual resonance of Jewish thought, and explains a variety of theological issues using the ancient Hebrew language as a key to understanding.

Calendar and Community: A History of the Jewish Calendar, 2nd Century Bce to 10th Century Ce
Calendar and Community
A History of the Jewish Calendar, 2nd Century Bce to 10th Century Ce
Hardcover      ISBN: 0198270348

This volume traces the development of the Jewish calendar from its origins until it reached, in the 10th century CE, its present form. Drawing on a wide range of literary, documentary, and epigraphic sources, this is the first comprehensive book to have been written on this subject. Stern shows that the Jewish calendar evolved during this period from considerable diversity (a variety of solar and lunar calendars) to unity. This consolidation of the calendar is one element in the unification of Jewish identity in later antiquity and the early medieval world.

The Canonization of the Synagogue Service
The Canonization of the Synagogue Service
Paperback      ISBN: 026800756x

Lawrence A. Hoffman's inquiry into the reasons for the canonization of the Jewish style synagogue service between the eighth and eleventh centuries presents a novel reinterpretation of the available evidence that will have repercussions for studies of Jewish and Christian liturgy. The author suggests that Babylonian Jewish authorities attempted to fix Jewish liturgy during the height of the geonic period (c. 750-1025 A. D.) in response to changing social and economic conditions, and that this period, customarily considered as a whole, should be divided instead into three distinct eras. Because the changing attitude toward liturgical canonization during this period reflects the Jewish community's self-perception and its view of other groups with whom it dealt, Professor Hoffman's findings cast fresh light on such important matters as the Karaite schism and the condition of the medieval Palestinian community. In addition, many of the ancient liturgical alternatives discussed provide essential background for studies of both Jewish and Christian liturgies of antiquity. To enhance usefulness of the book for nonexperts, this volume contains a glossary of liturgical terms and rubrics, introductory surveys of the history of the prayers discussed, and full biography and notes for further reading.

Celebrate!: The Complete Jewish Holidays Handbook
Celebrate!
The Complete Jewish Holidays Handbook
Paperback      ISBN: 1568219555

This innovative how-to guide and reference book on the Jewish holidays provides a well-rounded foundation for both knowledge and action. Unlike many books of its kind,Celebrate! The Complete Jewish Holidays Handbook is nondenominational and comprehensive in approach. The author includes the historical development, religious importance, and personal significance of each Jewish holy day in a way that is useful to both beginners and those well versed in Jewish practice. The richness and depth of Jewish tradition, with a full range of information on why and how to celebrate, is presented in a lively, warm, and user-friendly manner.

Celebrating the Jewish Year: The Fall Holidays: Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Sukkot
Celebrating the Jewish Year: The Fall Holidays
Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Sukkot
1st Edition    Paperback      ISBN: 082760842x

Named a 2007 National Jewish Book Award Runner-Up in the category of Contemporary Jewish Life and Practice.

JPS's holiday books take us through the joys, spirit, and meaning of the seasons. Blending the old and the new, they ground us in the origins and traditions of each holiday and open up to us ways we can add our own expression to these special days. Although synagogue ritual is touched upon, the real focus here is on our personal connections to each holiday and our home observance.

As we move from season to season, Paul Steinberg shares with us a rich collection of readings from many of the Jewish greats--Maimonides, Rashi, Nachmanides, Shlomo Carlebach, Marge Piercy, Elie Wiesel, Martin Buber, Abraham Joshua Heschel, Arthur Green, and others--and he guides us in discovering for ourselves the many treasures within each text. The readings teach us about the history of each holiday, as well as its theological, ethical, agricultural, and seasonal importance and interpretation; others give us inspiration and much food for thought. These stories, essays, poems, anecdotes, and rituals help us discover how deeply Jewish traditions are rooted in nature's yearly cycle, and how beautifully season and spirit are woven together throughout the Jewish year.

Celebrating the Jewish Year: The Spring and Summer Holidays: Passover, Shavuot, the Omer, Tisha B'Av
Celebrating the Jewish Year: The Spring and Summer Holidays
Passover, Shavuot, the Omer, Tisha B'Av
1st Edition    Paperback      ISBN: 0827608500

2009 National Jewish Book Award Winner, Jewish Family Literature

JPS's holiday books take us through the joys, spirit, and meaning of the seasons. As we move from season to season, Paul Steinberg shares with us a rich collection of readings from many of the Jewish greats--Maimonides, Rashi, Nehama Leibowitz, Irving Greenberg, Shlomo Carlebach, Marge Piercy, Elie Wiesel, Martin Buber, Abraham Joshua Heschel, Arthur Green, and others--and he guides us in discovering for ourselves the many treasures within each text. Some of the readings teach us about the history of each holiday, as well as its theological, ethical, agricultural, and seasonal importance and interpretation; others give us inspiration and much food for thought. These stories, essays, poems, anecdotes, and rituals help us discover how deeply Jewish traditions are rooted in nature's yearly cycle, and how beautifully season and spirit are woven together throughout the Jewish year.