Submitted by: Wise Temple

The Wise Temple Adult Learning program is deep, robust, and popular with congregants, and includes some long-time favorites that have continued in some fashion for many years, even decades. (Talmud and Rabbinic Judaism class is one such example.) 

The study of Torah is a commandment approached both seriously and joyfully. Lifelong Jewish learning is the best way to apply Jewish values in life, and learning is about the knowledge gained and how it guides one’s actions. Study enables thinking and acting in larger and deeper ways. 

Wise Temple welcomes learners of every stage – both first timers and experienced learners find classes accessible, inviting, and meaningful. Learners of every age – from young adults to senior adults – find topics that are relevant to their daily lives. Learners of every background – whether those born Jewish, Jews-by-choice, or non-Jewish spouses/partners – all find enlightening and stimulating discussion to meet their needs and interests.

The 2019-2020 schedule includes many topics for varied interests, many times for busy schedules, and many ways to challenge, inspire, and engage attendees’ thinking. A variety of formats – from individual seminars on a single subject to series featuring both Wise Temple rabbis and high-profile Jewish presenters outside of the Temple – provides something for everyone. 

Back for another year are the following programs: Tuesdays with Torah; Downtown Lunch & Learn; Shabbat Morning Torah Study; Distance-Wise; Talmud and Rabbinic Judaism; Mussar Yoga; Jewish Parenting Workshop; and Shavuot Sensation.

In addition, Wise Temple is offering two new, highly relevant courses. 

lsrael Salon is a series of six accessible conversations led by a Wise Temple rabbi on Thursday evenings, bookended by the Israeli culture of tea/coffee and music offered by Lior Tzoref, Israeli musician and educator. In recent years, complex issues in the political arena of Israel and its governments have caused some people to feel ambivalence or to disengage in their relationship to Israel. However, the bonds to Israel are much deeper than any political issue. Jews throughout the world have been significantly transformed by cultural influences within Israel. The founding of the modern state of Israel has included several meaningful ideas. From “the new Jew” to the “gathering of diverse Jews” to “a literary haven” to “a start-up nation,” great leaders have contributed much rich content to the development of our homeland and to all of Jewish life. 

The Civil Discourse Seminar, held on Monday evenings, addresses the question: Can text study of Biblical stories and their diverse interpretations empower us to engage more constructively in disagreements today? These days, civil discourse between the political divides is turning less and less civil. In response, the Pardes Center for Judaism and Conflict Resolution (PCJCR) has created a new initiative: Mahloket Matters: How to Disagree Constructively – The Beit Midrash Way. At the core of the traditional beit midrash (study hall) are havrutot (study pairs), critically studying together mahloket, conflicting opinions, found on every page of classic Jewish texts. This methodology of studying text can be used to increase the desire and ability to understand and engage more constructively with conflicting political opinions today, improving civil discourse. There are five classes, their topics ranging from Meet or Refuse to Meet? to Fear War or Trust Peace? and Fake News or Uncovering Truth? Attendees register once for the entire series – but are welcome to attend whichever ones they can. Rabbis Lewis Kamrass and Karen Thomashow will co-teach this course. 

For more information or to register, contact Wise Temple.

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