My Grandfather’s Blessings:
Stories of Strengh, Refuge, and Belonging
More than 300,00 copies in print
Published in 18 languages
My Grandfather’s Blessings is a book of wisdom, the wisdom of Rachel’s grandfather, an orthodox rabbi and student of Kaballah and Rachel’s own wisdom as a compassionate physician and a survivor of lifelong chronic illness. The stories in this book heal our deepest fears: that we do not belong, that we are not enough, that we are powerless, that we are alone. In My Grandfather’s Blessings, we discover that we all matter and that we are all healers. These stories will make you laugh and cry and ultimately show you who you really are and how large a difference you have already made to the people around you.
I happened upon your book “My Grandfather’s Blessings” quite by accident. I was at a bookclub meeting when a participant was displaying some books she had picked up at the local library sale. I had barely touched your book when it spoke to me and I knew I had to read it. I have since learned that there are no coincidences, that there is a purpose for all things that happen. At that time I had also just begun reading a book on kabbalah (David Cooper’s “God is a verb”). Mysteriously as I switched back and forth between books you were both talking about the same things, even quoting the same rabbis. I should say at this point that I also am a pediatrician and I work to listen and heal. I realize this concept is much more mainstream now than when you started working to “repair the world”. I found your book gently illuminating and have recommended it to many friends, friends who are struggling or simply searching. Still the most transformative concept for me was in the first pages, that we are all blessed, that we receive many blessings every day, every hour, every minute. Working on being open to receive those blessings as well as sharing blessings truly has opened doors to my appreciation of the holiness of life, as I know it has opened the hearts and minds of many. Thank you for your wonderful book of wisdom of the aliveness and the holiness of life and your gentle guidance in the practice of tikun olam. Thank you for so clearly and lovingly presenting kabbalah for everyman
To quote your mother “Your grandfather would be so proud”.
As a Registered Nurse of many years, I found the book helpful in rekindling myself as a compassionate caregiver. Reading Rachel’s book is like living the stories right along with her. Having had the pleasure of listening to her speak, and then reading her books has helped me to look at life differently. I found myself not wanting to put the book down. I wholeheartedly recommed this book, as well as “Kitchen Table Wisdom: Stories That Heal” to anyone who needs to learn to live well, or to anyone who needs healing. (We all need a little healing once in a while!) Thank you Rachael, your books have opened my eyes as a caregiver.
Rachel and her grandfather walk through life on a different path. Rachel is the academic achiever, who devotes her life to helping others in her profession as a medical doctor. Her grandfather, a rabbi and man of great wisdom, sees the world through a more devine and holy light. While their paths may be different, their ultimate purpose in life is the same. I never had the opportunity to bond with any of my grandparents, the geographical miles between us were far too great; however, it would be one of life’s greatest blessings to have had a grandfather as wise, gentle and understanding as Rachel’s.
The stories contained here will bring a smile and evoke a tear, as science, medicine, religion and spirituality exquisitely merge together throughout the pages of the book. Rachel embraces the world and the reader with her compassion and love for humanity. As you read through the pages, you will be left with a better understanding of life’s true meaning and purpose; it is a well-written and thought-provoking book.
Dealing long distance with the terminal illness of a loved one, I have begun to feel depleted and impotent. I picked up this book at the recommendation of a friend. At first, I was not sure it would do me any good. As I kept reading it found I was soothed and encouraged by the stories within. I even felt myself being gently chided, for I had been looking at the illness through the protective (and emotionally safer) eyes of the health care professional I am. It allowed me to open an area that I had kept shut, the feelings I had about the illness and the potential loss. I found the book to be a comfort and a blessing. I have kept it at my bedside and have turned to portions which I need for that day. It is divided into several areas speaking of both receiving and giving and how they are intertwined. I cannot put into words the comfort and encouragement these pages gave me.
My boyfriend and I decided to read this together to discuss and share our thoughts on the very brief stories. It’s been an enjoyable read! The stories vary from common sense anecdotes to great “ah ha” perspectives that just make you smile. All of the stories are very short (1 – 4 pages) in length. Dr. Remen offers such wisdom and insight in sharing stories of her grandfather’s teachings and her experience as a physician. I’ve purchased two more copies for friends.
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