So That Your Values Live On: Ethical Wills and How to Prepare Them

Overview

With this book, anyone, from any tradition, can write an ethical will.

Words that come from the heart enter the heart.” Many of these wills come from plain ordinary fathers and mothers, yet they touch the hearts of all who read them. And so I suggest that you read these wills, and then that you try your hand at writing one of your own. If you do, you will leave a gift to the future, and the not-yet-born ...

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So That Your Values Live On: Ethical Wills and How to Prepare Them

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Overview

With this book, anyone, from any tradition, can write an ethical will.

Words that come from the heart enter the heart.” Many of these wills come from plain ordinary fathers and mothers, yet they touch the hearts of all who read them. And so I suggest that you read these wills, and then that you try your hand at writing one of your own. If you do, you will leave a gift to the future, and the not-yet-born children of your children’s children will thank you and bless you for it.
from the Introduction

Ethical wills are precious spiritual documents, windows into the souls of those who write them.

Those who write ethical wills—often parents writing letters to their children or grandparents to their grandchildren—try to sum up what they have learned in life, and what they want most for, and from, their loved ones.

In this unique combination of “What Is” and “How To,” Riemer and Stampfer show how to prepare an ethical will and provide as guides examples of ethical wills written by almost 100 famous and ordinary people. This wide range of contemporary ethical wills reveals the ongoing relevance of ethical wills for people of all faiths, all backgrounds.

Ethical wills are precious spiritual documents--windows into the souls of those who write them. In a unique combination of "What Is" and "How To, " Riemer and Stampfer explain why you should prepare an ethical will and provide examples of ethical wills written by nearly 100 famous and ordinary people.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
This is a revised edition of Ethical Wills ( LJ 6/15/83). Ethical wills, in contrast to testamentary ones, do not need to be drawn by a lawyer and do not transmit tangible objects. They are a Jewish tradition of passing on the wisdom of a life, more often than not a life of hardship. The book begins with wills from the 18th century, which pass on each writer's religious passions. Next come the heartbreaking cries of Holocaust victims on scraps of paper tucked into cracks in the walls, or even scratched into walls; in their brevity they speak volumes. Wills from the land of Israel follow, informed by a sense of love and duty for a new homeland. The sampling of modern wills are more lighthearted: Sam Levenson leaves his grandchildren and, by implication, us ``some four-letter words for all occasions: give, care, love . . . .'' Each entry is preceded by a short profile of its writer. A guide to writing these wills concludes this uplifting book.-- Gerda Haas, Holocaust Human Rights Ctr. of Maine
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781879045347
  • Publisher: Jewish Lights Publishing
  • Publication date: 12/1/1993
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 1,008,865
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.61 (d)

Meet the Author

Rabbi Jack Riemer, a well-known author and speaker, has conducted many workshops and seminars to help people learn about the inspiring tradition of ethical wills and to prepare their own. He is rabbi of Congregation Beth Tikvah in Boca Raton, Florida, and the head of the National Rabbinic Network, a support system for rabbis across all denominational lines. He is editor of The World of the High Holy Days (Bernie Books) and Wrestling with the Angel (Schocken).

Rabbi Jack Riemer is available to speak on the following topics:

  • So That Your Values Live On
  • The Ethics of Fund Raising
  • Wisdom For the End of Life
  • David, Bathsheba and Woody Allen
  • Portrait of Elijah

Professor Nathaniel Stampfer is dean / vice president emeritus and professor of Jewish Studies at Spertus College in Chicago. He is editor of The Solomon Goldman Lectures: Perspectives in Jewish Learning (Spertus Press).

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Table of Contents

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