Email Email   


In Hebrew, Pirke Avot. Section of the Mishnah. This book is a collection of moral and religious teachings by the rabbis who contributed to the Mishnah. One of the six chapters from the Ethics of the Fathers is read on the afternoon of every Sabbath between Passover and Rosh Hashanah. The original purpose for the compilation of the Ethics was to teach right conduct and to show the divine source of the traditional law. An enlarged version is called the Avot de Rabbi Natan.

Rather than a legal document, an ethical will in Judaism refers to instructions written down during one’s lifetime for one’s children on how to preserve certain aspects of the Jewish heritage or how to live according to certain precepts. Such instructions, albeit verbal, are common in the Bible. During and after the Middle Ages ethical wills appeared in written form, some of which became important historical documents (such as Ibn Tibbon‘s). Recently in the U.S. the tradition of writing an ethical will was revived.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email