Rabbi Löwe’s grave

Rabbi Löwe's grave

In the old Jewish graveyard, I sought out the grave of Rabbi Judah Loew (Löwe) ben Beza, a legendary Rabbi and mystic from the 16th to early 17th centuries who officiated for a long time in Moravia (Freud’s birthplace), and then in Prague, where he became the Rabbi at the New-Old Synagogue. The lion on the gravestone refers to the meaning of the name Löwe = lion. Such decorative symbols were common among the graves in this cemetery.124 A 19th century legend says that he created the Golem, a large Frankenstein-like creature, to protect the Jews in the Prague ghetto, but the Golem got out of control and had to be dismantled – its remains were said to be hidden in the attic of the synagogue. Unlike most of the graves, which lean jumbled together and for lack of space had to be placed above other graves (against Jewish law) – which accounts for the graveyard’s being an elevated mound – Löwe’s grave is very impressive and well maintained. I followed Jewish custom and placed a stone on the grave, as had many other visitors before.

Advertisements

About pcooperwhite

Christiane Brooks Johnson Professor of Psychology and Religion, Union Theological Seminary, New York NY
Image | This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s