Confronting mortality

Rabbi Benjamin Blech has penned a personal reflection on being diagnosed with a fatal disease.

By ALAN ROSENBAUM
December 27, 2018 10:14
4 minute read.
How can you know when your time is up?

How can you know when your time is up?. (photo credit: JEFF DURHAM/MCT DIRECT)

 
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What do you do when told you are going to die?

Six years ago, Rabbi Benjamin Blech, a best-selling author, columnist, lecturer and Talmud professor, was informed that he was suffering from cardiac amyloidosis, a fatal and incurable disease. Blech, who had been a communal rabbi for almost 40 years and had helped congregants with their predicaments, now had to deal with his own personal crisis. Hope, Not Fear is his eloquent and personal response, in which he discusses his views on the fear of dying, death, life after death, and evidence for the existence of an afterlife, drawn from biblical, medical and anecdotal sources, and Jewish mysticism. While Blech explains that this book is not intended to be a specifically Jewish response to the subject but, rather, his own personal reflections, Jewish readers will appreciate the numerous talmudic, midrashic and kabbalistic sources that are cited throughout the book.

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