Such were my reflections after G‑d took my son Boruch back. Time has passed. Unimaginable as it may have seemed at the time, it has again become possible to laugh and feel joy, although in a different way. The wound has healed; but a scar remains.

I have committed all this to writing and exposed my feelings, for in my work as a Rabbi, I have come to realize that this can be helpful. Much of what is written here was said in conversation with others — people who knew that the time of their death was near, or people who had suffered a heavy personal loss.

Death remains, inevitably, a part of life. It is therefore important to learn of a view of life which makes it possible to alleviate the pain that death can cause.

Through these reflections I have tried to explain the “singing in sorrow” of so many millions of Jewish men and women — young and old, learned and illiterate, rich and poor — who kept their faith in G‑d in spite of all they went through during the Crusades, the Spanish Inquisition, the pogroms, and in the camps of Hitler and Stalin — in the unnumbered chapters of Jewish martyrdom.

Without attempting to be exhaustive, I have tried to formulate answers — especially those based on the Chassidic teachings of Chabad — to the old question of the meaning of suffering. It is a question to which so many could not and cannot find a positive answer because they are unaware of this Jewish perspective on life. And it is a question which, unfortunately, has remained unanswered in too many recent publications about the suffering of the Jews in World War II.

May the Almighty spare us further suffering, and may He grant us the opportunity to witness His visible goodness.