Some 250,000 mourners, including rabbis, public figures, politicians and showbiz personalities, attended the funeral in Israel of Baghdad-born Rabbi Yitzhak Kadouri, who died on 28 January aged about 106.
He was one of the last of the great Sephardi mystics and one of the last disciples of the famed Ben-Ish Hai (Hakham Yosef Haim).
His fame as a miracle worker spread far and wide, though he always shunned publicity.
On one occasion, according to the Jewish Chronicle of 10 March – ( subscription only), he exposed a thief at a Jerusalem yeshiva by linking every student’s name to verses in the Bible which he knew by heart. The guilty man was so amazed he immediately owned up.
Rabbi Kadouri ‘was more interested in studying Kabbalah amulet texts than using them for practical purposes. He was criticised by Sephardim as well as Ashkenazim for beliefs and practices considered superstitious. He was also blamed for allowing his naivete to be abused by others for political and commercial gain… but his charismatic presence helped Israel’s Sephardi community regain a sense of pride.’
This article(thanks: Albert ) by the International Sephardic Leadership Council gives an account of Rabbi Kadouri’s unusual relationship with King Hussein of Jordan.