Life after Death

Question

Hello. Contemplating and thinking about the views that Judaism has on life and death has left me confused and searching for an answer. Could you please give me a basic overview of Jewish life after death, and if that notion relates to the coming of the Mosiah. Thank you very much in advance.

, 14 years

Answers

  1. If by “life after death” you mean the experiences that some people describe after they’ve been in a “fatal” accident, or having been pronounced “dead” and yet, they see and hear things and “awaken” later to talk about them, there is no Jewish concept related to this, other than to say that if the person’s story is accurate, he must have still been alive to some extent while it was happening.

    If you are asking about the “Afterlife”, this is referred to in Hebrew as Techiat HaMeitim, or Resurrection of the Dead. This will take place at some future date (hopefully soon), some time after the coming of Moshiach. Some Rabbis have calculated that the resurrection will take place 1000 years after Moshiach’s arrival. It would be presumptuous of me or anyone else to state definitively what such a resurrection will look like, if it will be physical or spiritual, who will be resurrected and how, what they will look like etc… The Jewish “self” is traditionally his soul, and as such, much of what has been foretold about the future relates to the soul, and not necessarily the physical body. We have been assured that at that time, all beings will be freed of their evil inclinations, and everyone will lead a peaceful and fulfilling existence, basking in the warmth of G-d’s presence and His commandments. I guess we’ll just have to wait and watch it unfold.

    Best wishes from the AskTheRabbi.org Team