Ask the Rabbi

  • Halacha
  • Mysticism and Ayin Hara



Rabbi David Sperling

Tevet 3, 5775
If a loved one is missing and not found about 7 years presumed dead where does soul go are they earthbound because no burial is it wrong to ask a medium for location so we can have closure.her boyfriend committed suicide left no answers to us we need closure please answer we are heartbroken
Shalom, I am sorry to hear of your troubles – may you be granted only comfort from Heaven. Even though there is a command to bury the dead – the continued life of the soul is not dependant on a burial. In cases where burial is not attainable (for whatever reason), then the family is exempt from this duty, and they should get comfort from the fact that G-d Himself arranged the events in such a fashion. We are not privy to G-d's thoughts, but we are able to know that if He arranged the world in such a fashion, as to prevent us from burying the dead, then He desires it in such a way, and does not hold us accountable for that which is beyond our control. The use of a medium does not sound like a good idea. There are strict laws in Judaism about using divination – and in any event you may just be drawing out the tragedy, when what you need to be focusing on is, as you said, a form of closure. In Judaism we have an idea that I would like to suggest to you. We believe that good deeds (mitzvoth) done in the name of the deceased help the departed soul to find greater spiritual rest in the world to come. Perhaps you should find a project which you could take on in the name of the deceased, which would allow you to channel your energies into a positive outlet, whilst at the same time bring spiritual comfort to the departed. Whether you decide to help out in a soup kitchen, create a park, raise funds for a hospital, or sponsor a Torah class, it is all good – and will bring much blessing to all. May you be blessed with only joy and comfort.
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