Showing posts with label Afterlife. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Afterlife. Show all posts

May 8, 2021

Shabbat: Time Vs. Space

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called "Shabbat: Time Vs. Space."

When we choose to keep the Sabbath, we mark a day of the week in time, where we reject all the worldly pursuits of space and materialism in lieu of recognizing that there is a higher power, G-d Almighty, and that as Ahmari says 'everything else is ephemeral and passes away with time.'

What we do to make things holy in time rules over what we do purely physically in space, that nothing but G-d is timeless, and everything material reverts back to its origins and is gone from time as if it never even was. In the end, we need to live our lives with the forethought that the spirit goes to the everlasting afterlife, but the body goes to the physical grave.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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April 28, 2021

The Feeling of Shaming

What's it like to feel shame?

In this life, it's having your head ripped around your body.

Then in the next life, it's got to be a soul bared and stretched across the heavens and for all eternity.  

Punishment is revelation and the mark it undoubtedly leaves behind. 

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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February 10, 2021

Without a Brain or Soul

Wow, so this is us without a brain or soul. 

A real skull, all hollowed out.

Sockets for the eyes, and a big hole where the nose goes. 

The ears are gone too. 

The skull is sawed open at the top, where the brain goes. 

Not much left of the rotting teeth. 

The soul is departed and is somewhere in the afterlife. 

This should go a long way to humbling any human being. 

What's outside really doesn't count for much, and what's inside is everything.  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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September 11, 2020

Ghostbusters Mobile




Look what car I found today in Lancaster County.

The Ghostbusters Mobile.

The hood ornament is even a little ghost!

From the looks of the downtown, there very possibly could've been some ghosts around. 

Life and death are just a hairbreadth away. 

And when you die in one life, you pass over to the next. ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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November 23, 2019

The Life and Legacy of Sarah

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called "The Life and Legacy of Sarah."


The Rebbetzin explained beautifully that when we live a good life, not only does our soul live on in the afterlife, but our good deeds continue to have an influence in this world even after we, ourselves, have passed.

We should never underestimate our influence in this world, and that what we say and do reverberates like concentric circles that spread out from the source farther and farther. Moreover, while you might not think that what you do matters all that much or is a big deal, you never really know the outsize impact that it can have. Therefore, even while Sarah had passed and Abraham mourned her, the truth is that her legacy of the great Jewish nation was only just beginning!


(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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October 10, 2019

Adding A Very Special Facebook Friend

So this was really strange what happened to me before Yom Kippur. 

My parents passed away 5-6 years ago already.

I always miss them so much!

Somehow, on Facebook, my dad's Facebook profile came up, which I was surprised to find. 

Looking at it, I saw under his friends was of course, my mom. 

I didn't even know my mom had a Facebook page (I don't think she ever really used it). 

But I was so curious, I clicked on her profile.  

I saw the prominent blue and white button to "Add Friend."

And I saw my hand reaching to press for that button. 

I so wanted to reach out and be able to be with, see, communicate with her again. 

Then I stopped myself realizing that the friend request, unfortunately, couldn't go to Heaven. 

If only it could...I would be so happy to press that button and have my mom hear from me again. ;-)

(Photo of my dear parents from Florida)
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August 4, 2019

Open Your Eyes

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "Open Your Eyes to Hashem."


G-d has a plan and a reason for everything–not only for them, but for all of us. We are all on a journey, and even if we don’t always readily see G-d, it’s part of our core faith that He is always there, He is guiding us, and that everything is for the best. Yet despite our best efforts to have faith, at times, we may feel that we don’t know what we’re doing here–why we’re at this place, at this time, or even how we got here–we may actually feel a little lost. Maybe we just can rattle off a list of “Well I did this and then that and then this other thing happened.” But exactly how we got to where we are, regardless of our best laid plans, is often a mystery to us as human beings. As I often tell students and colleagues in the planning discipline of enterprise architecture, “Man plans, and G-d laughs.”

While we may think we are going about fulfilling our plans and accomplishing our life dreams, the truth is that everything ultimately comes from G-d. He gives you the strength, the health, the family and friends as support, the talent, the opportunity, and the right thoughts in your head and the right words in your mouth to do what you do. Of course, we must do our part and the hard work to find and fulfill our mission in life and to overcome the challenges we face, but we are flesh and blood and in the bigger realm of things, messengers of G-d in fulfilling his bigger plan for all of us. If we open our eyes, we realize that wherever we end up and whatever happens to us is by His merciful decree.


(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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May 17, 2019

A Good Father

I know it's not Father's Day yet, but I had a beautiful dream about my dad the other day that I wanted to share. 

In my dream, I was looking at this ledger.

And at the top of the ledger, it said:
"A Good Father"

I understand that good didn't mean like good vs. great, but rather like good vs. evil in this universe. 

Beneath it, there were lists and lists of signatures of people who knew my dad. 

Their signatures were an attestation that he was not only a good dad, but a good and righteous person. 

I remember in the dream his presence was there with me as I looked at the ledger. 

Then there was an astoundingly bright light that I was basking in.

Now I could feel I was in the presence of the Master of the Universe. 

I looked up to the center and most intense part of the light, and lifted my arms upward in complete supplication to it...towards G-d.

And I felt myself crying out to G-d, and as I cried out louder and more intensely, I was transported back--whooshed through a tunnel at light speed...to awaken from this incredible dream.

Unlike most dreams, this one I remembered and it stuck with me even days later now. 

My dad was truly a great father and a great man!

I am grateful to Hashem for letting me see him this week, and I miss him greatly. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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January 15, 2019

Transcending Suffering and Impermanence

There is a buddhist philosophy that life is all about loss and suffering. 

The Budha says:
Life is suffering.

Why? Because life is impermanence--whatever we gain, eventually, we must lose. 

- Riches, power, people, health, even our memories perhaps. 

In a sense, this is like the saying from "War of the Roses":
There is no winning, only degrees of losing. 

However, there is one exception to the impermanence and loss in life:

The only thing that is permanent is our good deeds, and with this we can achieve an everlasting good name for ourselves.

In Judaism, we teach:
A good name is better than fine oil.

Hence, this is the permanence that we strive for in life and in death.  

If we can attain a good name through purity of soul then in a sense, we can transcend life's suffering and impermanence.  

By becoming non-attached to all of life's temporary things, and instead focusing on perfecting ourselves, we can free ourselves from suffering and from this world, and then we can go on in everlasting-peace to the afterlife. 

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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August 7, 2018

Feeling Blue, Feel Better

Life is filled with so many wonderful marvels and joys--thank you G-d!

Yet interspersed is what feels like a series of non-ending life challenges. 

Yes, of course we wouldn't recognize or appreciate the good, if we didn't have the bad to compare it to. 

But just when you think you've gotten through one obstacle and are cruising nicely down Life Lane, then it seems like it's time for the next speed bump.

I know that having faith through thick and thin is a huge part of it. 

Also, challenging oneself to be strong and work through the next life dilemma. 

Sure, not everything is life and death, thank G-d.  

But even daily upsets can be frustrating.

I know inside though that in a weird sense, this is really what life is all about. 

It's not paradise we are living in--that comes later when we get our angel wings!

This is a world that challenges, teaches, and grows us. 

We are not here just to have a merry 'ol good time day in and day out. 

While that may be nice for a while, it would get pretty tiresome and pointless. 

Life is like a puzzle--a very big puzzle--and we are here to help solve it and in the process, we have the opportunity to become better souls for it.  ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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July 14, 2018

When Do You Become Old?

Is being old an age, a feeling, or both?

Some people seem to get old before their time.

They go about echting and kretzching--at 40 and 50, they are saying this hurts and I feel crummy about that!  Nu, I'm not 18 anymore!

Other people never, literally almost never seem to get old.

One lady I know is going to be 94 this month and she is going strong mentally, emotionally, and physically.  It almost seems impossible.  

This guy in the photo has a funny shirt on that says:
"I thought growing old would take longer."

Yeah, it does sort of creep up on you, but really, really fast.  Like where the heck did that come from!

I know inside for me, I always still feel like a kid. 

I have the same funny side, playful side, and curious side; the desire to be productive and accomplish something meaningful with my life and time, and to love and be loved. 

Yeah, things hurt a little more than they did years ago--can't believe the things I used to be able to do--Yes, at one time, I use to break cinder blocks with my bare hands, true!

But now, I can do other things like swim and hike and I love to write things that I am passionate about or to be a little creative too!

Maybe we do not get old...maybe we are just like caterpillars that morph into something else like butterflies during this life and into the life beyond. 

Age is experience, learning, growth--lots of mistakes--and then recovering and trying again and harder.  

Life is wonderment and excitement and appreciation for every amazing beautiful thing. 

No, life does not get old. 

Suffering and loss gets old quick and wish it never was. 

But we are physical bodies with eternal souls, so we go on and on into the wild blue yonder. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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May 29, 2018

The 3 P's Do NOT Matter

So I heard Joel Osteen give a great speech. 

He said that it's not any of these things that make a person worthwhile:

1. Possessions
2. Performance
3. Popularity

But rather, it is a person's inner self and soul that determine their value. 

Each person is a son or daughter of G-d.

I agree that our personal worth is a matter of how we act as human beings in choosing right over wrong and good over evil; and it is not based on how much we have, how successful we have become, or how much we are liked. 

In the end, a person must return to their maker alone to answer for their actions.  

You can't take anything with you.

Materialism and vanity all fade away and only your spiritual inner self will pass over and live on.  

So how will you spend your time and attention--chasing vanity of vanities or doing good in all your words and deeds? ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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December 14, 2017

My Realness and My Dreaminess

Just a quote from the show Homeland that I wanted to share:
"My dreams have a realness...
My Reality has a dreaminess..."
This is so true!

Dreaming and reality have a definite touchpoint and carryover between them. 

In Judaism, their is a saying that:
"Sleeping is one-sixtieth of death."

Life-sleeping-death all exist along a continuum. 

The elements of our being cross all three of these domains. 

When we are alive, there are elements of dreaminess--and it often doesn't feel quite real. 

When we are asleep, our dreams can often seem so real that we actually feel them and physically react them--we may even scream and wake up an incredible fright. 

When we are dead, I believe that we live on--that our soul never ceases--that it is a part of our everlasting G-d. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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November 4, 2017

5-Minute Intervals




This was sunrise at 5-minute intervals. 

All I can think is how glorious G-d is and how marvelous his creation.

- The light of the L-rd chases the darkness away.

- The might of the L-rd brings forth a new day. 

- The right hand of the L-rd shows us all the correct way. 

How are your works so majestic indeed. 

All we can do is gaze with eyes wide.

Truly the perfection of the L-rd is shown in his creation. 

We are blessed to see and experience it.

Every day is a miracle that we have in this world.

Even with pain and sorrow, our soul clings to this life. 

Until such time that our Maker calls us home to Him once more. 

Then we gasp our last breath and enter his Heavenly abode. 


For this world is just a corridor to the true world that is to come. 

And so just imagine what that must be like to be even closer to G-d and his endless loving majesty. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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August 5, 2017

Thou Shalt Not

Interesting speech by the Rabbi today in synagogue. 

What stood out to me was when he talked about the Ten Commandments, particularly the 2nd set of five. 

And how some people hear what they want to hear. 

All of the 2nd five start with "Thou shalt not,"  but there are those people that only hear the part that comes after those words. 

So for example: Thou shalt not kill...steal...commit adultery...lie...desire.

But not everyone listens to the "Thou shalt not" and instead they just hear--selectively:

- Kill
- Steal
- Commit adultery
- Lie
- Desire

If you take out the "Thou shalt nots," you are left with a list of terrible and evil deeds.

How convenient for those who are looking for the upper hand and pleasures in life--get rich quick, get and maintain power, take whatever and whomever you want and when you want it--no matter who it belongs to or how they feel.

Like the good angel and bad angel sitting over our shoulders and one says don't do the bad thing and the other encourages us to do!

Who you going to listen to? 

Not everyone seems to care--they live for today and forget about tomorrow. 

Yet every misdeed leaves a tarnish on our soul, while every good deed adds a merit. 

And if there is no justice in the end then who the hell wants to be in such a world anyway. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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July 19, 2017

Touched By An Angel

So the other night I dreamed.

And in the dream, an angel came to me and was over me as I lay down. 

The angel had it's finger pointing at my head in the right temple area. 

The finger was all white and while I could feel it having a solid state, it was able to pass in a non-solid state, transparently through the surface and slightly into my head. 

I felt pressure applied there and almost like a healing feeling.

The angel was pure white--like a holy marble, but not like marble. 

It was majestic, slender, and tall.

It had white feathery wings that were taller than it's body. 

It's face was like an adult, but also like a child--it was both. 

Its feet were like a smooth and solid arch, and did not have toes.

The angel hovered over my upper body, head area, and was looking at me and touching my right temple--with care and love. 

It was absolutely clear to me that the angel visiting me was my dear, dear father. 

Although, I woke with a slight headache, I felt happy and at great peace by his visit.

The experience was caring, loving, holy and I was uplifted by it. 

With his unbelievably pure and giving heart, it was beautiful to see my father as an angel--this was him all along. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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December 14, 2016

Life After Death

This was a beautiful article in The Sun about life after death. 

British physicists and research scientists are claiming that the soul exists at a sub-atomic quantum particle level. 

Evidence, they say, points to information (our consciousness) "stored in microtubles within human cells."

When a person dies, the quantum particle information is released from the body into the universe. 

If it's a near-death experience, the consciousness leaves only temporarily, but is then brought back to the cells in the host, and the patient revives. 

However, if the person dies, "it's possible that this quantum information, can exist outside the body, perhaps indefinitely, as a soul."

This theory is endorsed by researchers at the renown Max-Planck Institute, Germany's most successful research organization with 18 Nobel laureates  and 15,000 scientific publications a year. 

This is certainly one of the most hopeful and uplifting ideas that any of us can maintain--that life is not just finite, but that we are part of something infinitely larger, enduring, meaningful, and G-dly. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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October 30, 2016

What Do We Fear More?

So it's Halloween tomorrow.

It's a holiday to remember those that have passed. 

In modern times, it has become a holiday of ghosts and ghouls, spooky and scary.

People dress up often in ghastly costumes, party hearty, and go door to door, trick or treat.

With fright night, I ask myself, are we more afraid of what we don't understand from the spirit world or perhaps of what do understand from people in this life?

Certainly, the supernatural and the spirits--elements of what's awaiting for us on the other side are things we don't really have tangible experience with or understand...we are afraid of the unknown.

But in this world, we are familiar and encounter bad people and deeds, and unfortunately have to deal with them, but it never becomes easier or less scary to confront these.

Sure, we understand that not everyone is good, and not everyone has the best impulse control--people do rotten, horrible things for selfishness and greed or simply because they can't stop themselves.

How scary is it to run into and have to deal with people that can and will do almost anything--maybe without a conscious thought or remorse for doing wrong...perhaps, they might even enjoy hurting others, taking what doesn't belong to them, forcing their will or themselves on others, and doing unthinkable acts of crazed violence and evil. 

We are definitely afraid of people like this...they are out of control, and don't add up for those of us who think in terms of a soul, conscience, an everyday moral compass, and a seeing and hearing L-rd above

So life is scary, but death awaits us all as well. 

And as my dad used to say, no one has ever come back to tell us what happens over there. 

He had the most faith of anyone I know, and I understand we are supposed to have faith that we are going to a better place, but like coming out of the mother's womb into this world, when we die, we are coming out into a whole new place altogether. 

New things are scary and going from the physical world to the spiritual one, I assume can also be a little earth shattering--where exactly are we going and how will we be judged when we get there? 

Of course, I hope that I will be with my family and with G-d and bask in his eternal light. 

Thus for me, I find myself less scared of ghosts and metaphysical things, but the evil that people can bring, behind ghoulish smiles and with hidden agendas, telling lies and fooling us of their evil intent, that is scarier than any ghost or goblin, any time of year on Earth or beyond. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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October 10, 2016

Visiting My Parents

We went to visit my parent's graves yesterday. 

Now, between the Jewish high holy days of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, it is customary to visit and remember our blessed loved ones. 

We went to spend time with them, tell them how much we miss and love them, and how hard it is without them. 

I was so moved by how beautiful my daughters spoke out loud to my parents in heaven--their words and tears were so full of sincerity for how they miss and love their dear Oma and Opa. 

They could articulate what was so hard for me to say, but which weighs so heavy always on my heart. 

We sat on the ground at the base of their headstone feeling their presence and hearing their words in memory and through my wife who has a special ability to somehow reach them.

My wife told me how she could see my mother literally dancing in heaven, and my dad always worrying about us and looking out for and telling us to be more religious...always, more religious. 

I wiped the dust off that had settled on the stone over the last months, and wished that I could somehow magically, with whatever spiritual energy I could muster, raise them up and bring them back to us.

The thought of years or decades of going on and not being able to see and speak with them again, in person, is forever impossible for me to imagine. 

The loss of my parents over the last few years has left an emptiness in my heart and keeps me asking myself, will I really be able to see them and be reunited with them again some day in heaven. 

My daughter reassured me that energy, including our personal energy, never disappears, it only transforms, and my wife said that she could feel that they were okay and happy!

I recounted the joke my dad used to tell about not wanting to be buried at the edge of the cemetery, because that's where the water runs down, and he didn't want to get rheumatism. 

I know how much they loved us and I could feel it sitting at their graves with the warmth of the sun over us and the cool breeze blowing against us. 

I will live out my days, trying my best to emulate in my own way my father, who was a servant to the L-rd in all that he did, and who taught us strict right from wrong, and as my mother who took care of us no matter what challenges or suffering were faced. 

Finally, we asked for their forgiveness for any wrongs we committed and for their blessing for what is to come. 

I am grateful to them and G-d for every blessed moment with my family and to experience the beauty and learning of the world, until it is my turn to be gathered to my family and the L-rd in the after. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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July 9, 2016

Conflicts That Challenge Us

My wife told me something good today (first time ever, haha).  

There are three types of conflicts:

1) Between Man and Himself -- these are our internal conflicts or demons (fears, anxieties, guilt, compulsions, and evil impulses) that we must conquer. 

2) Between Man and Man -- these are conflicts we have with others and we must resolve them with either empathy, compromise, giving, and forgiveness or at the other end of the spectrum with fight or flight.

3) Between Man and His Environment -- these are conflicts that are man-made or natural in our surroundings and may involve scarcity, harsh or destructive conditions, and obstacles to overcome with scientific and engineering problem-solving. 

I would add a 4th type of conflict:

4) Between Man and G-d -- these are conflicts we have in trying to understand why we are here, what G-d wants from us, and "why bad things happen," and involve our relationship and reconciliation with and service to our maker. 

Basically, these four conflicts are more than enough to keep us busy day-in and -out for our entire lifetime, and either we resolve them and go to the afterworld, or perhaps we have to come back to do some more work on resolving them again. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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