Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The importance of visiting [examining] the sick


"Rabbi Akiva proclaimed: One who does not examine the ill is spilling their blood."

(Talmud, Nedarim 40a)

To explain - Rabbi Akiva's comment came after an incident in which he visited an ill student and found that the student was not receiving proper care. When Rabbi Akiva came, the care was upgraded and the student recovered.

Note: The term in Hebrew for visiting the sick is 'bikur cholim,' but the actual translation of those words is 'examining the sick,' because this is the essence of the visit, along with praying for the sick person's welfare.

Have a great day,

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