Religion: Kaddish Suit

With their garments slit, their locks tousled, an orthodox Jewish family mourns its dead by sitting shivah—in stocking feet, on rough boxes instead of chairs—during the first seven days. For eleven months after the death there is daily Kaddish, a prayer in the synagog, usually led by a son or daughter of the deceased. Some rabbis chant a routine, blanket Kaddish at the end of services, for all the congregation's dead. After eleven months the deceased is presumed to be redeemed by these prayers, to pass on from Gehenna (Hell) to Heaven. On...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!