The physical set-up of the shiva house includes the following: Memorial Candle – A person's soul is compared to a flame, since each person brings light into the world.And just as one can take from a flame to light more candles without diminishing the original flame, so too a person can give of him/herself, touching many lives, without ever being diminished.To be seen during the day in public would force one to put on a "public face" which is inappropriate during this time.When family, friends and neighbors help out during the week and provide for the needs of the mourners, an atmosphere of love, caring and kindness is created.The care for the departed before burial, the eulogy, the actual burial – all are done to honor the one who has died, and not to comfort the mourners.However, once shiva begins, the focus shifts to the mourners.We de-emphasize our own physicality by not pampering our bodies, so we remember that what we are missing at this time is not the physical person who is gone, but the essence of who that person was, which of course is their soul.The overall focus throughout the week is: I am a soul, my loved one is a soul.
Memories will come easily there, and part of the comfort of the week of shiva is sharing such memories.
But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through..the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself.
For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men.
He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist.
Judaism provides a beautiful, structured approach to mourning that involves three stages.