What happens when we die? Does the soul die with the body? Is there a possibility of life after death? Throughout human history, every civilization and probably every individual has asked these questions. In this fascinating and accessible volume, Dr. Leila Leah Bronner explores Judaism's teachings about the afterlife.
Journey to Heaven invites readers to rediscover some of the basic tenets of Jewish belief concerning the hereafter: resurrection, immortality, judgment, messianism, and the World to Come. Starting with the Bible's references to Sheol and allusions to resurrection, this comprehensive survey explores immortality and bodily resurrection in Second Temple literature; the Mishnah's discussions of olam ha-ba, the World to Come, and how to merit entering it; and the Talmud's depictions of Gan Eden (paradise), Gehinnom (hell), and the soul's journey through these metaphysical landscapes. Bronner also explores the views of medieval scholars such as Maimonides and Nahmanides, Jewish mystical teachings about reincarnation, and modern views of faith and belief. A separate chapter is devoted to views of the Messiah over the course of Jewish history.
Bronner demonstrates that the afterlife is indeed a vital part of Judaism, as she reveals how generations of Jews, from biblical times to the present, have grappled with its core ideas and beliefs about the hereafter.