Click over to read my responsd to A Simple Jew's question to me about some aveilim who seem to show emotion and others who do not. Here is ASJ's question to me...
A Simple Jew asks:
After returning from a shiva house, you wrote to me that you found it remarkable that the widow had a tremendous sense of composure and did not show any outward signs of sadness.
Firstly, please do not misinterpret my words or think me to be insensitive. I understand that people express grief in different ways. In our era, indeed there have even been great tzaddikim who have grieved privately in the manner you described. Yet, not crying seems completely foreign to me. At the funeral of my grandmother in 1999, I asked Mr. J why it seemed like no one else was crying and I, on the other hand, was bawling my eyes out. Mr. J turned to me and said, "You have to realize, you have a different kind of heart."
The Sudilkover Rebbe, though also seems to share my type of heart. When I spoke to him on the phone as he sat shiva, he told me that he would find himself breaking out crying at times as he thought about his father.To me, crying is giving a true expression to your inner self and not crying is attempting to put on a façade of composure; attempting to fool others into believing that you are really an emotionally strong person. When a person grieves inside but not externally, he is not exemplifying the principle of tocho kebaro; he is lacking the quality of simplicity.
As much as I can respect the fact that others may have a differing viewpoint, I cannot change my own on this topic. So, my friend, could you please share with me your thoughts on what I wrote above?
Dixie Yid Answers...
(Picture of Picasso's "The Tragedy," from his "Blue Period," courtesy of mintaka.sdsu.edu)
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