It is tradition that the burial takes place as soon as possible, sometimes on the same day as the death, and no more than two nights after the death. The dead body is placed on the ground and psalms are recited. The body is then washed and wrapped in a white linen shroud, following which it is placed in an inexpensive wooden coffin.
At the graveside it is considered an honour to shovel soil onto the coffin. Flowers are not generally brought to the funeral as it is kept as simple as possible. After the funeral the mourners eat a simple meal prepared by friends or neighbours.
In orthodox families the next of kin will tear their upper garments and remain indoors for seven days (the shivah) sitting on low stools. Mourning can last for one month or one year. These stages of return to normal life of the mourners reflect the soul’s gradual progress to the afterlife.