The Kaddish is all about our deepest desire as a people for a time when the world will be the way it was meant to be. G_d created a world “according to His will” with infinite potential for good and beauty—but it’s up to us to bring that out. We are like the farmers, plowing and seeding—and then waiting for the rain to fall, the sun to shine and our crop to sprout. So too, after so many generations of keeping Torah and its mitzvahs despite all the obstacles and challenges, we await the final sprouting and harvest of our redemption and the redemption of the entire world through the arrival of a great Jewish leader “the anointed one”—better known as the moshiach.
May that be very soon, sooner than we can imagine.
The Kaddish is not in Hebrew, but in a mixture of Hebrew and Aramaic. Aramaic was the common language of Jews for many years and the Kaddish was meant to be recited and understood by the common people. Three mothers of the Jewish People, Rebecca, Leah and Rachel, were from Aram, so our roots in this language are very deep—much deeper than Yiddish, Ladino or Judeo-Arabic. In fact, it’s considered “holy language #2”—a kind of intermediary between the holy and the mundane.
Here is a translation of the main body of the Kaddish:
May His great name be magnified and sanctified
In the universe that was created according to His will
And may His Kingdom be established
And may redemption sprout forth
And may His anointed one come.
May it happen in your lifetime
And in your days
And in the lifetime of all the House of Israel
Speedily and very soon
And they should say “Amen”
May His great name be blessed forever and ever and ever
May the name of the Holy One, blessed be He,
be blessed and lauded and beautified
and exalted and raised up and glorified
and elevated and praised
Higher than any blessing and song,
praise and consolation
that we could say in the world
And they should say Amen