Friday, July 29, 2011

Chesed Shel Emet or butting in?

A guest post by Philo

I’ve recently gotten several emails and Facebook notices about signing a petition to prevent the cremation of Aaron Tabachnik, a young Jewish man who committed suicide. Apparently, the mother, with whom he lived in Florida, plans to cremate him, and the father, who lives in Israel, is trying to stop the cremation and have his son buried in the traditional Jewish manner instead.

While it's sad that this young man will be cremated in opposition to halacha, I don't think it's the business of the Jewish public to get involved. Leave the grieving mother alone. The father can contest her decision, but it should remain a family matter.

When I said as much in a comment thread on Facebook, several people stressed the supremacy of halacha and how that justified getting involved. They mentioned rumors about the mother having issues and that the father is the good guy here.

I did a quick internet search which brought up accusations from the father against the mother and vice versa. Who knows what the facts are? IMO, halacha doesn't justify getting involved in a grieving family's dispute. It’s not the public’s business.

What do you think?

Buy one of the books that changed the way I think.

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