Saturday, 19 October 2013

Ritual Cleansing & Dead Bodies

A dead human body is the most unclean of all unclean things on earth according to the Law of Moses which, incidentally, the Ten Commandments were derived from.

Coming into contact with, say, a dead animal or creature of any sort, renders the person concerned ceremonially unclean, in which case the person concerned may not set foot in the temple, the first one built by King Solomon incidentally, or participate in any religious ceremony conducted within.

He / she shall be required to bathe and wash his / her clothes as well as everything he / she may have touched while still remaining unclean until evening, the washed items included. The uncleanliness in such a case lasts for one day. Incidentally, the same is true in the case of uncleanliness resulting from sexual relations with one's spouse.

The uncleanliness in the case of contact with a dead human body, however, without subjecting oneself to ritual cleansing, a ritual involving what's known as the water of cleansing made from ashes and blessed by no less than a Levite, a designated temple priest, within seven days, lasts forever.

Even being in the same room with a corpse renders one unclean, let alone actually touching it.

What does someone who has a high regard for this particular statute of Moses' but without access to such a purification ritual do where deceased friends or relatives are concerned, since it is known that what Moses instructed the Israelites to do were not from his own mouth?

In the case of a very close relative, I suppose one may turn a blind eye to the fact that one shall be rendered eternally unclean by contact with, say, a dead mother or father. After all, what choice does one have in such a case?

In the case of friends or their close relatives however, I suppose they shall just have to make up their own minds as to why one does not show up at their doorsteps to show one's respects to the deceased person concerned, should such an event come to pass, since anything to do with Moses, except for those sacred Ten Commandments, the first ten out of over six hundred incidentally, is considered archaic in these parts anyway.

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