Scholar of Afterlife Mythology



JEWISH VIEWS OF THE AFTERLIFE is a unique historical and philosophical study tracing the evolution of ideas about individual postmortem survival in Judaism. Originally published in 1994, this book has become a classic in its time, the most comprehensive examination of life after death in Judaism available in English.

Surveying a far-ranging assortment of texts on life after death in Bible, Apocrypha, Rabbinic literature, medieval philosophy, medieval legendary Midrash, and the Jewish mystical traditions of Kabbalah and Hasidism, this book presents an extensive portrayal of the ever-changing notions of life after death over a period of almost four millennia.

In addition, through a synthesis of Jewish sources with contemporary psychological thought, near-death experiences and consciousness research, JEWISH VIEWS OF THE AFTERLIFE offers a contemporary statement on ways of understanding the afterlife journey of the soul from a spiritual point-of-view.

Now a revised second edition of the JEWISH VIEWS OF THE AFTERLIFE has been published by Rowman and Littlefield, and features new material on the practical implications of Jewish afterlife beliefs, including funeral, burial, Shiva, and an updated preface looking at how views on life after death have changed in recent years.

While many affirm a belief in the afterlife, a scarce few are aware of where these teachings can be found in Jewish literature. Both historical and contemporary, this book provides a rich resource for scholars and lay people, for teachers and students, and makes a significant contribution to the growing contemporary psychology of death and dying.

A signed copy of Jewish Views of the Afterlife, with “Forward” by Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, can be purchased directly from author.

Paperback Edition $39.95 plus $4 S&H

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Dr. Simcha Raphael
Mount Airy Counseling Center
6833 Wayne Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19119

Dear Simcha -

I just wanted to let you know how useful your book on Jewish Views on the Afterlife was to us. Our son chose this topic for his Bar-Mitzvah project and we spent many hours throughout reading through your book and taking notes… I am happy to say we are almost done with the project and have learned a tremendous amount and not only on the afterlife!

Everybody thought it was a very heavy topic for a twelve year old person, but he chose it and struck through it, even though a lot of help and support was required :).

As you know very well – there is an amazing lack of books on this subject, so you practically saved us!

Thank you,
Stella Veretnik
San Diege, Ca.