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When Bad Things Happen to Good People
Synopses & Reviews
As a young theology student, Harold Kushner puzzled over the Book of Job. As a small-town rabbi he counseled other people through pain and grief. But not until he learned that his three-year-old son, Aaron, would die in his early teens of a rare disease did he confront one of life's most difficult questions: Where do we find the resources to cope when tragedy strikes?
"I knew that one day I would write this book," says Rabbi Kushner. "I would write it out of my own need to put into words some of the most important things I have come to believe and know. And I would write it to help other people who might one day find themselves in a similar predicament. I am fundamentally a religious man who has been hurt by life, and I wanted to write a book that could be given to the person who has been hurt by life, and who knows in his heart that if there is justice in the world, he deserved better. . . . If you are such a person, if you want to believe in God's goodness and fairness but find it hard because of the things that have happened to you and to people you care about, and if this book helps you do that, then I will have succeeded in distilling some blessing out of Aaron's pain and tears."
Since its original publication in 1981, When Bad Things Happen to Good People has brought solace and hope to millions. In his new preface to this anniversary edition, Rabbi Kushner relates the heartwarming responses he has received over the last two decades from people who have found inspiration and comfort within these pages.
From the Hardcover edition.
About the Author
Harold Kushner is Rabbi Laureate of Temple Israel in the Boston suburb of Natick, Mass., after serving that congregation for twenty-four years. He is best known as the author of When Bad Things Happen to Good People, an international best seller first published in 1981. The book has been translated into fourteen languages and was recently selected by members of the Book of the Month Club as one of the ten most influential books of recent years.
He has also written When All You've Ever Wanted Isn't Enough, which was awarded the Christopher Medal for its contribution to the exaltation of the human spirit. In 1995, Rabbi Kushner was honored by the Christophers, a Roman Catholic organization, as one of fifty people who have made the world a better place in the last fifty years. His other books include When Children Ask About God, Who Needs God, To Life, and a 1996 best seller How Good Do We Have to Be? With novelist Chaim Potok, he is co-author of the new Conservative commentary on the Torah, scheduled for publication in the Fall of 2001. His book Living A Life That Matters will be published by Knopf in September 2001.
Rabbi Kushner was born in Brooklyn, New York, and graduated from Columbia University. He was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary in 1960 and awarded a doctoral degree in Bible by the Seminary in 1972. He has six honorary doctorates, has studied at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and taught at Clark University, Worcester, Mass., and the Rabbinical School of the Jewish Theological Seminary. For four years, he edited the magazine Conservative Judaism. In 1999, the national organization Religion in American Life honored him as their clergyman of the year.
From the Hardcover edition.
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