One may ask why we place small stones or pebbles on the monument after a Jewish unveiling or visit to the grave of a loved one. Religious leaders can find no religious reason for this tradition. It is a custom that developed hundreds of years ago.
The explanations for this Jewish bereavement custom of placing stones on Jewish graves include:
- It may be seen as a reminder of the presence of loved ones.
- A large quantity of stones signifies the presence of many visitors.
- In early years, there were no monument stones erected. Rather, the monument consisted of a large quantity of small stones to mark the burial place. In essence, each small stone contributes to the building of the monument.
- As stones in the monument began to dissipate, it was necessary to replace lost stones to rebuild the monument.
Whatever the reasons, in the 21st century, it is traditional and respectful to place a stone at the monument as an expression of love and remembrance. Remembrance Stones™ carry an inscribed message. Since you can write your own personal message on the opposite side of the Remembrance Stone, you can convey your feelings for those who have passed on, as you would when you place a note between the stones at the Western Wall.
Remembrance StonesTM ~ The Stones You Personalize