08 September 2006

Live long and prosper. Or something like that.

It is said that one who lives righteously, will be blessed with a long life. But what about all the tzaddikim (righteous people) who died young? Well, say our sages, “long life” does not refer to the length of time you will be alive, but how long your name will live. If you live a righteous life and your children learn by your example, your name will be kept alive in their doing.

The story is told of Korach, whom G-d caused to be swallowed up by the earth for his rebellion. Yet, to this day, we recite a psalm written by the sons of Korach every Monday. Korach wasn’t righteous, but his sons recognized the error of their father’s way and made amends by writing a psalm and choosing to live righteously themselves. They have therefore redeemed their father’s name and caused him to live a long life, by keeping his name on our lips for centuries.

That’s all fine and dandy. Problem is, you can be as righteous as the day is long, but if you don’t have kids, and you ain’t no Rabbi Akiva, your name will die right along with your body.*

* Unless you have lots of money and can have someone dedicate a wing in your name at the Jewish Community Centre. Then, your name will live on. No one will remember you, but your name will exist forever. Or at least as long as the building stands.

And yes, I am that snarky today.

1 Comments:

At 8/9/06 4:57 PM, Blogger ms. x said...

Unless you have lots of money and can have someone dedicate a wing in your name at the Jewish Community Centre. Then, your name will live on. No one will remember you, but your name will exist forever. Or at least as long as the building stands.

Weinsteins? Who are these Weinsteins? I'm just looking for the StairMaster!

Snark on, sister!

-x-

 

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