Hebrew (Jewish) Culture

  1. Death Belief
    • Form of worship
    • Elements of the individual
  2. Hebrew Form of worship:
    • Monotheism
    • by about 150 B.C. beliefs were basic
  3. Monotheism
    Belief in one God
  4. The form of Monotheism worship developed as a set of organized beliefs by when?
    the end of the Babylonian Captivity (597 to 547 B.C.)
  5. Yaweh
    Hebrew's central figure of worship
  6. 150 B.C. Hebrew's basic beliefs;
    • 1. upon death, souls of he righteous passed directly into a blessed existence
    • 2. souls of the wicked were sent into a state of punishment
    • 3. both the righteous & the wicked would be raised from the netherworld at the day of last judgement to receive final rewards or punishments
  7. Hebrew elements of the individual:
    Basar & Nefesh
  8. Basar
    referred to the flesh
  9. Hebrew's feel what should be returned to dust
    the flesh
  10. Nefesh
    referred to the breath, spriit or soul of the individual
  11. Where does the Nefesh reside
    in the blood in life
  12. In life what would they also have in death
    emotions, sexual desires, fear, sadness, etc.
  13. Concept of the Afterlife:
    • Sheol-they believed to be the netherland or "land of the Dead"
    • and that the Nefesh would rise from the body & go to Shoel to remain until judgement day
  14. Preparation of the body under Hebrew custom:
    • 1. Those involved in the preparation of the body
    • 2. process of the body treatment
  15. Chevra Kaddish or Bodywashers
    were considered very important indivdiuals assigned the care of the dead
  16. Process of the body treatment:
    • Closing the mouth & the eyes
    • Bathing the body
    • Anointing process
    • Dressing the Remains
  17. Closing the mouth & the eyes
    • by tying a scarf around the head to hold the jaw in place until rigor set in
    • & by using an adhesive powder on the eyes
  18. Bathing the body
    The washing process was considered a very important step in preparing the body
  19. Anointing Process
    They used spices & oils which to anoint the body but only those, which would prevent decomposition
  20. Dressing the Remains
    • Body would be dressed in the finest clothing owned by deceased
    • This practice was important due to their belief of being more easily recognized in the afterlife
  21. The Practice of final disposition:
    • Creamation concept
    • Burial practices
  22. Creamation concept
    it wasn't practiced because they felt that fire would destroy Nefesh
  23. Burial practices
    • *generally too place at sundown on the day of death due to hygienic necessity
    • *early Hebrews buried their dead without coffins( it came into limited use after the Babylonian Captivity)
    • *The body would be carried tothe place of interment on a Bier
  24. Types & places of Burial
    • Trench Graves
    • Sunken Graves
    • Chamber Graves
  25. Trench Graves
    utilized mainly by the poor & simple consisted of placing the body in a shallow trench & over that a mond of earth was shoveled
  26. Sunken Graves
    • *a shallow grave over which a slab of stone would be placed as the cover
    • *the stone slab offered more protection from predators or grave robbers
  27. Chamber Graves
    • the most common type of grave used
    • man-made caves carved in the side of a hill or mountain or natural caves discovered & found to be suitable
  28. Grave Identification:
    • Early Practices: indicated protection of the dead
    • 1. didn't belive in marking their graves with any identification
    • 2. no dates of birth or death or the name of the deceased were used
    • 3. no flowers were allowed to adorn the grave
  29. Mourning customs of early Hebrews:
    • Behavior of the Survivors
    • The use of professional Moruners
    • The offering of sacrifices
  30. Behavior of the Survivors
    • *Kriah referes to the practice rendering or tearing ones garments as a sign of mourning
    • *the removal of all clothing w/ the exceptions of a loincloth of goat or camel hair & remain that way until the burial rites were completed
    • * to leave the head always covered either by shawl or you could use the hands
    • * wearing a Yamaka
    • *bare feet
    • *cutting or scratching ones flesh, a sign of mourning, its forbidden now
    • * me would shave their head, if more grief striken then they would shave thir beads
    • *throwing oneself in the dust, now sitting in the dust or placing dust upon the head
    • * fasting from food & drink; began at the moment of death & terminated at the and of the day of death
  31. The use of professional Moruners
    • to increase he wailing volume of the family
    • also to recite poems & verses about the deceased
  32. The offering of sacrifices
    the first-born son had the responsibility to bring sacrifices tothe grave in the form of food & drink sotat his deceased father could enjoy his final rest
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Hebrew (Jewish) Culture