Yitgadal v’Yitkadash
Magnified and sanctified
Enlarged, expanded and made holy
Shmei Rabba
The Great Name
The Grand Name
The many names of the One
Which one?
Whose great name?
What does it mean
To make a great name
Holy, larger?
How can I do that?
Just by uttering
An ancient Aramaic formula
That my father
my grandfather
my great-grandfather
my great great-grandfather
And his ancestors
Uttered over and over?
Is that grand?
Is that holy?
Is that meaningful?
These words seem to resonate
From this world
To the world beyond
Piercing the veil
Of time and space.
But what is the Great Name?
Who is the Great Name?
What is the Profound Hearing?
Is it the Nameless One?
The Infinite One?
That is blessed – yitbarakh
praised – v’yishtabakh
glorified – v’yitpoar
elevated – v’yitromam
extolled – v’yitnaseh
honored  – v’yithallal,  and
lauded –  v’yihaleh.
How can I evoke
A Name I know not?
Am I praising
elevating and
The Holy Name
The One beyond any blessings and hymns
But which Name?
And why?
And why not?
Not my name
Not my father’s name
So who is that One
Who will bring
Abundant peace from Heaven?
And when I stand
Pronouncing these archaic words
Am I really able to evoke
Abundant peace
Cosmic harmony
For all Israel
For all the world
Do my words have power?
Does my grief find consolation in these words?
Am I powerless to connect with the realm of the dead?
In this time of powerlessness
These ancient words
Yitgadal, v’Yitkadash
I cry out
To open my heart
To  remember your presence
To touch your heart
In there peace in all the world?
Is there peace in my heart?
Is there peace between me and my brothers?
Between Isaac and Ishmael?
Yitgadal, v’Yitkadash
Make holy my suffering
My longing
My sorrow
May the Name of the Holy One be present. 



Eleven months have passed
No fanfare
No grand ritual moment
Barely a whimper
And a sigh
Followed by the ongoing
Perennial question
Why did you have to die?
Because your time was up
And now
According to the wise advice
Of Rabbi Israel Isserles
Who said parents
Only get limited not maximum
Time in Gehenna
Whatever that is
Eleven months after we buried you
On a freezing cold day
Today, with the last
Of autumn leaves
Making their earthbound descent
The streaming waves
Of the Kaddish channel
Go silent
My status as a mourner
Among the community of Israel
Among the community of humanity
Changes suddenly
And forever more
Almost as suddenly
As my life changed
The day you died
And today
Like everyday
The past eleven months
I am a fatherless child
I am a son
Without a father
A little boy
Standing alone
Without his Daddy
I am a man
Orienting myself in the world
With only a compass of memory and legacy
Flying by the seat of his pants
Today as I utter these words
Yitgadal v’Yitkadash
Shmei Rabbah
One last time
As a mourning child
I will praise the Great Name
The One that helped me
Guided and healed me
Throughout these months
Of mourning
And when I say
Yehei shmei rabbah mevorakh
L’olam u’lamei almayah
I shall look upwards
To the supernal worlds
Stretching through all time and space
And contemplate the mysteries
Of life, death, love and loss
Once more
As I’ve done each and every day
Since you died
And for a moment
There will be a twinge
A subtle heart-opening
Kaddish connecting
A momentary passing visit
With my father
As I praise, adulate
Adorn and bless my God
Thanking God
For Presence
For Peace
In my life
And in the life of all humanity
And as the words end
Eleven months of Kaddish saying
Have passed
The Kaddish channel goes silent
And I now know
I will never be the same
Life will have changed forever.

KADDISH by Rabbi Geela Rayzel Raphael

In memory of my father, Michael Eliezar Ben Avram Yehuda v’Slovah – 
Mitchell Lazerous Robinson
Chorus: Yitgadal v’yitkadash shmay raba  (2x)
I integrate your legacy,
Treasure your memory
What I have learned from you
I’m left with your love.     Chorus:  Yitgadal……
I come to You in grief
Walk in humility
Grateful you have been with me
I lift in your Your love.     Chorus:  yitgadal……
We rise to praise Your name
All our waking days
Where you have guided us
We walk in Your love.      Chorus:  Yitgadal……
Create a path for peace
to live in harmony
for us and all the world
Bless us with love.             Chorus:  Yitgadal……



Audio file of Kaddish by Rabbi Geela Rayzel Raphael

Kaddish by Geela Rayzel Raphael

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