Life Cycles. Whether we are coming together or moving apart in the cycle of life, we can mark the moment with creative and inspiring ritual.

Maimonides, the great Jewish scholar and philosopher, taught that we have a sacred obligation to visit the sick, bury the dead, and celebrate with the bride and groom (Maimonides, Hilchot Avel 14:1). Caring for the life cycle needs of our friends, family, and neighbors is an integral part of our lives as Jews. Contemporary lifestyles both invite and challenge us to do this. Our families are often scattered and our time is frequently tight. But moments of transition call out for ritual. They beckon us to stop and commemorate the beauty and fragility of life. In the 21st century, we have the opportunity to mark moments that our ancestors did not recognize or understand, such as welcoming girls into the covenant; adult b’nei mitzvah; and gay and lesbian marriages and commitment ceremonies. Together, we can craft life cycle rituals that build on tradition and celebrate the vibrant Jewish present.

Messiness and Beauty

By Rabbi Deborah Glanzberg-Krainin, Ph.D.
Ritualwell’s executive editor, Deborah Glanzberg-Krainin, sat down to talk with rabbis Nancy Fuchs Kreimer, Ph.D., and Sue Levi Elwell, Ph.D., editors of the newly published anthology Chapters of...  more
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God Language

From Kol Haneshamah Daily Prayerbook
Traditional and alternative phrases for blessing formulation   more
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