Engaging Israel: Foundations for a New Relationship

Tuesdays: 7—8:30 p.m.
9 Sessions: March 21, 28; April 18, 25; May 2, 16, 23; June 6, 20
Fee: $50

Through video lectures, text study, and lively group discussion, we are pleased to bring the world-renowned faculty of the Shalom Hartman Institute into the Beth Israel community this spring.

Going deeper than the political issues of the day, Engaging Israel re-frames the discussion about the enduring significance of the State of Israel for contemporary Jews worldwide.

The Engaging Israel course elevates the North American conversation about Israel by rooting it in Jewish values and ideas rather than in a response to crisis. We will explore questions such as: What are the benefits of Jewish sovereignty? How should a Jewish state exercise military power ethically? How do we create and maintain a Jewish democracy? Why should American Jews care about Israel? What values should a Jewish state embody? What can Israel offer the world? In this way, Engaging Israel will equip participants with a quintessentially Jewish values-based vocabulary to define and articulate why Israel and Zionism can and should be fundamental to our Jewish identity.

Each session includes text study and discussion led by Rabbi Samuels, a video lecture by Rabbi Dr. Donniel Hartman, and a video dialogue between Rabbi Hartman and other top scholars and experts. Join us for this wonderful opportunity to learn from great scholars and from one another as we engage in thinking about the meaning that Israel can have in our lives and what our role might be in envisioning and building the future of the Jewish State.

Please RSVP at your earliest convenience so we can order the appropriate amount of materials.

   Beth Israel is committed to teaching Judaism as a living religion. Our sacred texts and lessons still speak to us today in the modern world and have the potential to enlighten every facet of our daily lives. Lifelong learning is a central tenet of Judaism and we are thrilled to offer you various courses which we hope will pique your interest. May your participation in one or multiple courses continue to either nurture your commitment to the Jewish community or bring you closer to this beautiful tradition. You are encouraged to register ahead of time in order that we may provide appropriate materials and to ensure that a class will not be cancelled. Whether you are a veteran adult ed student or a newcomer, we look forward to engaging with you in Torah and the Jewish tradition and making new friends in the process.

   — Rabbi Joshua Samuels

This year we will be offering a number of courses for you to engage in the Jewish value of lifelong learning. A full list of courses and schedules can be downloaded here, but below is a snapshot of what’s to come in 5777.

Judaism 201
Torah Trope
Kol B'Yachad -- Sing Together
Pirke Avot: Learning from our Sages
Aleph Bet Ease
The Siddur: Words for the Heart, Wings for the Soul
Engaging Israel: Foundations for a New Relationship

And more!

Judaism teaches that when we pray, we speak to God. But when we study, God speak to us. Come and be a part of what just might be a profound experience.

What Jewish topic do you want to learn about or discuss?

What text have you always wanted to explore but never had the opportunity?

What current Jewish issue in on your mind? 

   With Living Room Learning you open up your home to a small group (around 8) of friends and neighbors, come up with a Jewish topic, and Rabbi Samuels will bring the materials to study.  Start brainstorming Jewish topics your group would like to delve into, then contact Rabbi Samuels to schedule a date.

Thursdays from 7 to 8:15 p.m., starting February 6, 2014

2nd Sunday each month, 1 to 2:45 p.m.
Instructor: Linda Hirsh
Beginning March 9, 2014

We will write about our personal experiences with Judaism, both religious and secular. Non-professional writers are invited; no need to be a Torah expert. This fun process starts with a prompt, followed by stream of consciousness writing for 10 to 15 minutes. After that, we will discuss the results nonjudegmentally for content, citing memorable words, phrases, sentences or sections. There is no fee for the class. To register, contact Linda Hirsh.

Upcoming Events

22Jul
07.22.2017 9:30 am - 10:30 am
Torah Study
22Jul
07.22.2017 11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Tot Shabbat service
29Jul
07.29.2017 9:30 am - 10:30 am
Torah Study
4Aug
08.04.2017 6:15 pm - 7:45 pm
Family Shabbat service

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