Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday
7:00
Shacharit
7:45
8:30
Shacharit
7:45
8:30
Shacharit
7:45
8:30
Shacharit
At the Kotel
7:00
8:30
Description:
The bus leaves the Yeshiva at 7:00 am.
Required Texts:
Schedule:
Language: עברית
Faculty:
Shacharit
7:45
8:30
8:00
Breakfast
Dvar Yomi at 8:55
8:30
9:00
Breakfast
Dvar Yomi at 8:55
8:30
9:00
Breakfast
Dvar Yomi at 8:55
8:30
9:00
Breakfast
Dvar Yomi at 8:55
8:30
9:00
Breakfast
8:45
9:00
9:00
Talmud I
Silverstein
9:00
12:00
Description:
The rabbinic tradition represented a transformation in the Jewish tradition. It introduced the idea that universal study could be a means for both transcendence and the search for truth. The Babylonian Talmud may be its crown achievement. Shaped between the first through sixth century, it contains a panoply of the elements that make up Jewish life and religion. Throughout the ages, its unique way of argumentation has provided its charm and its challenge. The ability to fathom its depths has been a lynchpin in shaping Jewish identity. In Introductory Talmud, we first focus on the earliest works of the rabbinic tradition: Mishnah, Midrash Halakha and Tosefta as independent texts before moving on to see how the Talmud uses them and other materials to build the basic units of Talmudic discussion know as a sugya or argument. Emphasis will be placed on learning Talmudic terminology, the structure of the Talmudic sugya, and on the Talmud’s manner of interpreting earlier sources. This class aims at fostering independent learning skills including the use of Rashi’s commentary. This year we will be learning passages from Tractate Shabbat. We will examine the concept of “melacha” – forbidden work, and how the rabbinic interpretation of this term came to define the meaning of Shabbat and how we observe it.
Required Texts: Mishna Shabbat, Talmud Shabbat, appropriate dictionaries
Schedule: Meets 4 mornings per week. The time is divided between chevruta and shiur.
Language: English/עברית
Faculty: Rabbi Mordechai Silverstein
Talmud II
Levy
9:00
12:00
Description:
Jewish life through millennia of diaspora could not be maintained by an infinitely deferred promise of future rewards in exchange for current suffering. It required Jews to taste for themselves the immediate benefits of a life of spiritual practice. Shabbat has played a major role in allowing regular Jews to touch redemption in daily life. We will see how the detailed, disciplined practices of Shabbat were shaped by the rabbis of the Mishnah and Talmud to that end. This course is for students with a limited background in rabbinics to learn to unpack the highly compressed literary and legal texts of the tannaitic period and to see how they evolved when they were interpreted in light of the different concerns, genres and approaches of the Amora'im. We will aim to furnish students with the skills both to become independent readers of the Mishnah and Talmud and to see the philosophical and religious issues at play behind the highly technical language of these texts.
Required Texts:
Schedule: Meets 4 mornings per week. The time is divided between chevruta and shiur.
Language:
Faculty: Rabbi Joel Levy
Talmud III
S. Cohen
9:00
12:00
Description:
While Shabbat has remained central to Jewish identity and practice since the Bible, the notions of Shabbat and its observance have hardly remained static. Instead over the course of several generations the Jews imagined and re-imagined what a palace in time and space would look like in their study and innovations around the concept of Shabbat. A close look at at Masechet Shabbat is at once a study of the Rabbi’s attempts at bridging the gap between tradition and innovation and an opportunity to explore the ways in which we continue to create sacred space and time today, divide between holy and profane and create community. This level course is for students who have already acquired a certain familiarity with the study of Mishnah and Talmud. We will begin by reading chapters of Mishnah Shabbat together with parallel sections from the Tosefta. We will go on to study chapters from Bavli Shabbat with Rashi’s commentary – with special attention being paid to the tannaitic background of the Talmudic discussions, the literary structure of those discussions and their social, moral, and philosophical underpinnings. Students will leave the class with the ability to independently study a Talmudic sugia with tools available in the Beit Midrash.
Required Texts:
Schedule:
Language:
Faculty:
Talmud IV
Kulp
9:00
12:00
Description:
The Babylonian Talmud is a tapestry of voices sounded from the first through the sixth centuries C.E. One of the greatest literary treasures of human history, the Talmud's passages weave together arguments over legal matters, descriptions of rituals, theological speculations, midrashic interpretations, biblical legends and folklorish wisdom. It is without a doubt the book that set the agenda for Jewish learning throughout the ages. But the Talmud is not a transparent work. In Advanced Talmud we focus on the Bavli, its sources and its post-Talmudic interpretation. We attempt to reveal how the Bavli was edited, how it radically shifted the Jewish understanding of the Torah, God and the world, and how it was interpreted and used as a source of law and wisdom subsequent to its editing. This year we will be learning passages from Tractate Shabbat. We will see how the notion of forbidden work emerged during the Second Temple and early rabbinic period, how the "39 forbidden labors" were codified and used as the basis of all Shabbat law in the Talmudic period, and how early Talmudic commentators adopted Talmudic law to match the reality in which they lived.
Required Texts:
Schedule:
Language:
Faculty:
Talmud - Geiger
Raber
9:00
12:00
Description:
Masechet Shabbat: Intro to Rabbinic Literature, Second Semester The main goal of this course is for the students to develop the basic skills necessary to access rabbinic literature and, especially, the Babylonian Talmud by themselves. In order to achieve this goal we will focus on sugyiot from Perek “Klal Gadol”, the seventh chapter of Tractate Shabbat from the Babylonian Talmud. The students will be introduced to critical methodologies of Talmud study; therefore, special emphasis will be placed in the dissection of the sugyia into its halakhik and literary components as well as into its layers of redaction; additionally, we will focus on the identification of technical talmudic (i.e. stammaitic) terminology and on the characterization of the main rabbis mentioned in the sugyiot. Finally, in order to understand the process of development of given sugyiot, we will draw on talmudic manuscripts and old recessions as well as on parallel sources in Rabbinic Literature. In addition to the methodological aspects, Perek “Klal Gadol” deals with some relevant halakhic issues. Therefore, besides the methodological aspects on how to approach a talmudic sugyia, we will also dive into some of the major halakhic and theoretical aspects of this chapter through the lens of the main Rishonim who dealt with these questions. For this purpose, a brief introduction to the literature of the Rishonim and the historical circumstances in which this literature was developed will be conducted. At the end of this course students will have internalized a range of concepts and methodological approaches that will allow them to deal with the talmudic text at a certain level.
Required Texts: Talmud Bavli, Tractate of Shabbat, Vilna edition.
Schedule:
Language: עברית
Faculty: Yardén Raber
Talmud I
Silverstein
9:00
12:00
Description:
The rabbinic tradition represented a transformation in the Jewish tradition. It introduced the idea that universal study could be a means for both transcendence and the search for truth. The Babylonian Talmud may be its crown achievement. Shaped between the first through sixth century, it contains a panoply of the elements that make up Jewish life and religion. Throughout the ages, its unique way of argumentation has provided its charm and its challenge. The ability to fathom its depths has been a lynchpin in shaping Jewish identity. In Introductory Talmud, we first focus on the earliest works of the rabbinic tradition: Mishnah, Midrash Halakha and Tosefta as independent texts before moving on to see how the Talmud uses them and other materials to build the basic units of Talmudic discussion know as a sugya or argument. Emphasis will be placed on learning Talmudic terminology, the structure of the Talmudic sugya, and on the Talmud’s manner of interpreting earlier sources. This class aims at fostering independent learning skills including the use of Rashi’s commentary. This year we will be learning passages from Tractate Shabbat. We will examine the concept of “melacha” – forbidden work, and how the rabbinic interpretation of this term came to define the meaning of Shabbat and how we observe it.
Required Texts: Mishna Shabbat, Talmud Shabbat, appropriate dictionaries
Schedule: Meets 4 mornings per week. The time is divided between chevruta and shiur.
Language: English/עברית
Faculty: Rabbi Mordechai Silverstein
Talmud II
Levy
9:00
12:00
Description:
Jewish life through millennia of diaspora could not be maintained by an infinitely deferred promise of future rewards in exchange for current suffering. It required Jews to taste for themselves the immediate benefits of a life of spiritual practice. Shabbat has played a major role in allowing regular Jews to touch redemption in daily life. We will see how the detailed, disciplined practices of Shabbat were shaped by the rabbis of the Mishnah and Talmud to that end. This course is for students with a limited background in rabbinics to learn to unpack the highly compressed literary and legal texts of the tannaitic period and to see how they evolved when they were interpreted in light of the different concerns, genres and approaches of the Amora'im. We will aim to furnish students with the skills both to become independent readers of the Mishnah and Talmud and to see the philosophical and religious issues at play behind the highly technical language of these texts.
Required Texts:
Schedule: Meets 4 mornings per week. The time is divided between chevruta and shiur.
Language:
Faculty: Rabbi Joel Levy
Talmud III
S. Cohen
9:00
12:00
Description:
While Shabbat has remained central to Jewish identity and practice since the Bible, the notions of Shabbat and its observance have hardly remained static. Instead over the course of several generations the Jews imagined and re-imagined what a palace in time and space would look like in their study and innovations around the concept of Shabbat. A close look at at Masechet Shabbat is at once a study of the Rabbi’s attempts at bridging the gap between tradition and innovation and an opportunity to explore the ways in which we continue to create sacred space and time today, divide between holy and profane and create community. This level course is for students who have already acquired a certain familiarity with the study of Mishnah and Talmud. We will begin by reading chapters of Mishnah Shabbat together with parallel sections from the Tosefta. We will go on to study chapters from Bavli Shabbat with Rashi’s commentary – with special attention being paid to the tannaitic background of the Talmudic discussions, the literary structure of those discussions and their social, moral, and philosophical underpinnings. Students will leave the class with the ability to independently study a Talmudic sugia with tools available in the Beit Midrash.
Required Texts:
Schedule:
Language:
Faculty:
Talmud IV
Kulp
9:00
12:00
Description:
The Babylonian Talmud is a tapestry of voices sounded from the first through the sixth centuries C.E. One of the greatest literary treasures of human history, the Talmud's passages weave together arguments over legal matters, descriptions of rituals, theological speculations, midrashic interpretations, biblical legends and folklorish wisdom. It is without a doubt the book that set the agenda for Jewish learning throughout the ages. But the Talmud is not a transparent work. In Advanced Talmud we focus on the Bavli, its sources and its post-Talmudic interpretation. We attempt to reveal how the Bavli was edited, how it radically shifted the Jewish understanding of the Torah, God and the world, and how it was interpreted and used as a source of law and wisdom subsequent to its editing. This year we will be learning passages from Tractate Shabbat. We will see how the notion of forbidden work emerged during the Second Temple and early rabbinic period, how the "39 forbidden labors" were codified and used as the basis of all Shabbat law in the Talmudic period, and how early Talmudic commentators adopted Talmudic law to match the reality in which they lived.
Required Texts:
Schedule:
Language:
Faculty:
Geiger
Aviezer
9:00
12:00
Talmud I
Silverstein
9:00
12:00
Description:
The rabbinic tradition represented a transformation in the Jewish tradition. It introduced the idea that universal study could be a means for both transcendence and the search for truth. The Babylonian Talmud may be its crown achievement. Shaped between the first through sixth century, it contains a panoply of the elements that make up Jewish life and religion. Throughout the ages, its unique way of argumentation has provided its charm and its challenge. The ability to fathom its depths has been a lynchpin in shaping Jewish identity. In Introductory Talmud, we first focus on the earliest works of the rabbinic tradition: Mishnah, Midrash Halakha and Tosefta as independent texts before moving on to see how the Talmud uses them and other materials to build the basic units of Talmudic discussion know as a sugya or argument. Emphasis will be placed on learning Talmudic terminology, the structure of the Talmudic sugya, and on the Talmud’s manner of interpreting earlier sources. This class aims at fostering independent learning skills including the use of Rashi’s commentary. This year we will be learning passages from Tractate Shabbat. We will examine the concept of “melacha” – forbidden work, and how the rabbinic interpretation of this term came to define the meaning of Shabbat and how we observe it.
Required Texts: Mishna Shabbat, Talmud Shabbat, appropriate dictionaries
Schedule: Meets 4 mornings per week. The time is divided between chevruta and shiur.
Language: English/עברית
Faculty: Rabbi Mordechai Silverstein
Talmud II
Levy
9:00
12:00
Description:
Jewish life through millennia of diaspora could not be maintained by an infinitely deferred promise of future rewards in exchange for current suffering. It required Jews to taste for themselves the immediate benefits of a life of spiritual practice. Shabbat has played a major role in allowing regular Jews to touch redemption in daily life. We will see how the detailed, disciplined practices of Shabbat were shaped by the rabbis of the Mishnah and Talmud to that end. This course is for students with a limited background in rabbinics to learn to unpack the highly compressed literary and legal texts of the tannaitic period and to see how they evolved when they were interpreted in light of the different concerns, genres and approaches of the Amora'im. We will aim to furnish students with the skills both to become independent readers of the Mishnah and Talmud and to see the philosophical and religious issues at play behind the highly technical language of these texts.
Required Texts:
Schedule: Meets 4 mornings per week. The time is divided between chevruta and shiur.
Language:
Faculty: Rabbi Joel Levy
Talmud III
S. Cohen
9:00
12:00
Description:
While Shabbat has remained central to Jewish identity and practice since the Bible, the notions of Shabbat and its observance have hardly remained static. Instead over the course of several generations the Jews imagined and re-imagined what a palace in time and space would look like in their study and innovations around the concept of Shabbat. A close look at at Masechet Shabbat is at once a study of the Rabbi’s attempts at bridging the gap between tradition and innovation and an opportunity to explore the ways in which we continue to create sacred space and time today, divide between holy and profane and create community. This level course is for students who have already acquired a certain familiarity with the study of Mishnah and Talmud. We will begin by reading chapters of Mishnah Shabbat together with parallel sections from the Tosefta. We will go on to study chapters from Bavli Shabbat with Rashi’s commentary – with special attention being paid to the tannaitic background of the Talmudic discussions, the literary structure of those discussions and their social, moral, and philosophical underpinnings. Students will leave the class with the ability to independently study a Talmudic sugia with tools available in the Beit Midrash.
Required Texts:
Schedule:
Language:
Faculty:
Talmud IV
Kulp
9:00
12:00
Description:
The Babylonian Talmud is a tapestry of voices sounded from the first through the sixth centuries C.E. One of the greatest literary treasures of human history, the Talmud's passages weave together arguments over legal matters, descriptions of rituals, theological speculations, midrashic interpretations, biblical legends and folklorish wisdom. It is without a doubt the book that set the agenda for Jewish learning throughout the ages. But the Talmud is not a transparent work. In Advanced Talmud we focus on the Bavli, its sources and its post-Talmudic interpretation. We attempt to reveal how the Bavli was edited, how it radically shifted the Jewish understanding of the Torah, God and the world, and how it was interpreted and used as a source of law and wisdom subsequent to its editing. This year we will be learning passages from Tractate Shabbat. We will see how the notion of forbidden work emerged during the Second Temple and early rabbinic period, how the "39 forbidden labors" were codified and used as the basis of all Shabbat law in the Talmudic period, and how early Talmudic commentators adopted Talmudic law to match the reality in which they lived.
Required Texts:
Schedule:
Language:
Faculty:
Talmud - Geiger
Raber
9:00
12:00
Description:
Masechet Shabbat: Intro to Rabbinic Literature, Second Semester The main goal of this course is for the students to develop the basic skills necessary to access rabbinic literature and, especially, the Babylonian Talmud by themselves. In order to achieve this goal we will focus on sugyiot from Perek “Klal Gadol”, the seventh chapter of Tractate Shabbat from the Babylonian Talmud. The students will be introduced to critical methodologies of Talmud study; therefore, special emphasis will be placed in the dissection of the sugyia into its halakhik and literary components as well as into its layers of redaction; additionally, we will focus on the identification of technical talmudic (i.e. stammaitic) terminology and on the characterization of the main rabbis mentioned in the sugyiot. Finally, in order to understand the process of development of given sugyiot, we will draw on talmudic manuscripts and old recessions as well as on parallel sources in Rabbinic Literature. In addition to the methodological aspects, Perek “Klal Gadol” deals with some relevant halakhic issues. Therefore, besides the methodological aspects on how to approach a talmudic sugyia, we will also dive into some of the major halakhic and theoretical aspects of this chapter through the lens of the main Rishonim who dealt with these questions. For this purpose, a brief introduction to the literature of the Rishonim and the historical circumstances in which this literature was developed will be conducted. At the end of this course students will have internalized a range of concepts and methodological approaches that will allow them to deal with the talmudic text at a certain level.
Required Texts: Talmud Bavli, Tractate of Shabbat, Vilna edition.
Schedule:
Language: עברית
Faculty: Yardén Raber
Talmud I
Silverstein
9:00
12:00
Description:
The rabbinic tradition represented a transformation in the Jewish tradition. It introduced the idea that universal study could be a means for both transcendence and the search for truth. The Babylonian Talmud may be its crown achievement. Shaped between the first through sixth century, it contains a panoply of the elements that make up Jewish life and religion. Throughout the ages, its unique way of argumentation has provided its charm and its challenge. The ability to fathom its depths has been a lynchpin in shaping Jewish identity. In Introductory Talmud, we first focus on the earliest works of the rabbinic tradition: Mishnah, Midrash Halakha and Tosefta as independent texts before moving on to see how the Talmud uses them and other materials to build the basic units of Talmudic discussion know as a sugya or argument. Emphasis will be placed on learning Talmudic terminology, the structure of the Talmudic sugya, and on the Talmud’s manner of interpreting earlier sources. This class aims at fostering independent learning skills including the use of Rashi’s commentary. This year we will be learning passages from Tractate Shabbat. We will examine the concept of “melacha” – forbidden work, and how the rabbinic interpretation of this term came to define the meaning of Shabbat and how we observe it.
Required Texts: Mishna Shabbat, Talmud Shabbat, appropriate dictionaries
Schedule: Meets 4 mornings per week. The time is divided between chevruta and shiur.
Language: English/עברית
Faculty: Rabbi Mordechai Silverstein
Talmud II
Levy
9:00
12:00
Description:
Jewish life through millennia of diaspora could not be maintained by an infinitely deferred promise of future rewards in exchange for current suffering. It required Jews to taste for themselves the immediate benefits of a life of spiritual practice. Shabbat has played a major role in allowing regular Jews to touch redemption in daily life. We will see how the detailed, disciplined practices of Shabbat were shaped by the rabbis of the Mishnah and Talmud to that end. This course is for students with a limited background in rabbinics to learn to unpack the highly compressed literary and legal texts of the tannaitic period and to see how they evolved when they were interpreted in light of the different concerns, genres and approaches of the Amora'im. We will aim to furnish students with the skills both to become independent readers of the Mishnah and Talmud and to see the philosophical and religious issues at play behind the highly technical language of these texts.
Required Texts:
Schedule: Meets 4 mornings per week. The time is divided between chevruta and shiur.
Language:
Faculty: Rabbi Joel Levy
Talmud III
S. Cohen
9:00
12:00
Description:
While Shabbat has remained central to Jewish identity and practice since the Bible, the notions of Shabbat and its observance have hardly remained static. Instead over the course of several generations the Jews imagined and re-imagined what a palace in time and space would look like in their study and innovations around the concept of Shabbat. A close look at at Masechet Shabbat is at once a study of the Rabbi’s attempts at bridging the gap between tradition and innovation and an opportunity to explore the ways in which we continue to create sacred space and time today, divide between holy and profane and create community. This level course is for students who have already acquired a certain familiarity with the study of Mishnah and Talmud. We will begin by reading chapters of Mishnah Shabbat together with parallel sections from the Tosefta. We will go on to study chapters from Bavli Shabbat with Rashi’s commentary – with special attention being paid to the tannaitic background of the Talmudic discussions, the literary structure of those discussions and their social, moral, and philosophical underpinnings. Students will leave the class with the ability to independently study a Talmudic sugia with tools available in the Beit Midrash.
Required Texts:
Schedule:
Language:
Faculty:
Talmud IV
Kulp
9:00
12:00
Description:
The Babylonian Talmud is a tapestry of voices sounded from the first through the sixth centuries C.E. One of the greatest literary treasures of human history, the Talmud's passages weave together arguments over legal matters, descriptions of rituals, theological speculations, midrashic interpretations, biblical legends and folklorish wisdom. It is without a doubt the book that set the agenda for Jewish learning throughout the ages. But the Talmud is not a transparent work. In Advanced Talmud we focus on the Bavli, its sources and its post-Talmudic interpretation. We attempt to reveal how the Bavli was edited, how it radically shifted the Jewish understanding of the Torah, God and the world, and how it was interpreted and used as a source of law and wisdom subsequent to its editing. This year we will be learning passages from Tractate Shabbat. We will see how the notion of forbidden work emerged during the Second Temple and early rabbinic period, how the "39 forbidden labors" were codified and used as the basis of all Shabbat law in the Talmudic period, and how early Talmudic commentators adopted Talmudic law to match the reality in which they lived.
Required Texts:
Schedule:
Language:
Faculty:
Geiger
Aviezer
9:00
12:00
Israel Program
Rabbinical Students
9:00
12:00
Seeing the Other: Social Justice and Human Rights in Israel
Cohen/Rothberg
9:00
12:00
Description:
The challenges facing Israeli society today are as complex and dramatic as the long history of this ancient land. In the face of tough issues like the treatment of asylum seekers, the rights of women and the status of Palestinians, assertions that all people were created in the image of God, or that we were slaves in Egypt, are not sufficient. Can Judaism guide us towards more just and compassionate societies? And do we ourselves recognize inequality and human suffering when we have something to lose? In this course, students will learn about social justice issues in Israel from a Torah perspective. We’ll delve into Torah texts, learn about contemporary issues in Israel, meet experts and activists, and go out into the field. Particular emphasis will be placed on the meaning of social justice and human rights activism in the context of Jewish identity. Can we tap into the depths of our sacred tradition to better understand and help mend the world?
Required Texts: Photocopies of material will be distributed.
Schedule: Full year, Thurs. 9-12 including study, field trips and external speakers.
Language: English
Faculty: Rabbi Shoshana Cohen and Dr. Shaiya Rothberg
12:00
Lunch
12:00
13:15
Lunch
12:00
13:15
Lunch
12:00
13:15
Communal Lunch
With Sicha
12:00
13:15
Lunch
12:00
13:15
13:00
Hebrew Language
Multiple Levels / Various Teachers
13:15
15:15
Tefilah
Levy
13:15
15:15
Description:
For a large proportion of Jews in the diaspora public Tefilah/prayer is a primary mode of Jewish activity and identification. For many, however, the complex traditional liturgy of rabbinic Judaism, developed over centuries, proves impenetrable and difficult. Access to the rabbis’ elaborate network of verbal disciplines and practices remains frustratingly elusive. In this course we will explore the development, structure and details of these core practices and experiment with how to use them. We will see how the precise details of rabbinic liturgy were carved out of biblical texts and rabbinic philosophy and we will think about how repetitive verbal patterns might impact on our inner and outer lives.
Required Texts:
Schedule:
Language: English
Faculty:
Practical Halakha – Yom Tov
Zacharow
13:15
15:15
Description:
In this course, we will learn the intricate Toraitic and Rabbinic laws concerning Shabbat & Yom Tov. Examples of sanctifying the Shabbat include the complex edicts of preparing for and honoring the Shabbat, accepting its holiness, kiddush & seudot (meals) and havdalah. We will have an overview of the traditional 39 melakhot (forbidden types of “work”) and focus on a few such as bishul (cooking) and carrying. Vis-à-vis Yom Tov the focus will be how it differs from Shabbat, particularly regarding these last two categories (transferring fire and carrying) as well as other unique features. Our constant guide will be the famous mishna berurah commentary on orekh hayyim as well as additional source sheets outlining the process of halakhic development grounded in the Talmud through the commentaries of the medieval period and the best-known codes of Jewish law and responsa literature. While studying the traditional texts, we will constantly be widening our halakhic perspective and discussing the relevance to our personal and communal lives as Jews in the 21st century.
Required Texts: Mishna Berurah by R. Yisrael Meir Kagan
Schedule:
Language:
Faculty: Rabbi Shlomo Zacharow
Hebrew Language
Multiple Levels / Various Teachers
13:15
15:15
Practical Halakha
Silverstein
13:15
15:15
Description:
From the time that the Torah came into the world on Sinai, Jews have related to God through their observance of the mitzvot. Over time, these mitzvot were transformed into an entire system of how a Jew should live his/her life. This system is known as Halakhah. It is a system that taken to its fullest governs nearly every single element of a person’s behavior, from what shoe she puts on first in the morning through the last things she says when she goes to bed at night. Simply put, for thousands of years, to be a Jew meant to take part in the Halakhic system. Jews who have grown up observant of Halakhah integrate this system naturally into their lives-they spent their childhood observing their parents, siblings, friends and community acting in accordance with Halakhah. But not everyone grew up in such an environment. This class is geared for students newer to the halakhic system. It will begin to answer basic questions essential for understanding the halakhic system--how does one keep Shabbat (there are a lot of details in this one)? What can I do on "Yom Tov" that I cannot do on Shabbat? What makes a pot or a dish "kosher"? What are the rules regarding which prayers must be recited? This class provides the student with the tools to find answers to many basic questions on his or her own. Finally, and most importantly, the class is an opportunity to discuss with the teacher and other students how halakhah and its myriads of details can become a meaningful part of one’s own personal life.
Required Texts: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch of Harav Halevi and distributed materials
Schedule: Meets once a week, 2 hours per session.
Language: English
Faculty: Rabbi Mordechai Silverstein
Practical Halakha – Yom Tov
Zacharow
13:15
15:15
Description:
In this course, we will learn the intricate Toraitic and Rabbinic laws concerning Shabbat & Yom Tov. Examples of sanctifying the Shabbat include the complex edicts of preparing for and honoring the Shabbat, accepting its holiness, kiddush & seudot (meals) and havdalah. We will have an overview of the traditional 39 melakhot (forbidden types of “work”) and focus on a few such as bishul (cooking) and carrying. Vis-à-vis Yom Tov the focus will be how it differs from Shabbat, particularly regarding these last two categories (transferring fire and carrying) as well as other unique features. Our constant guide will be the famous mishna berurah commentary on orekh hayyim as well as additional source sheets outlining the process of halakhic development grounded in the Talmud through the commentaries of the medieval period and the best-known codes of Jewish law and responsa literature. While studying the traditional texts, we will constantly be widening our halakhic perspective and discussing the relevance to our personal and communal lives as Jews in the 21st century.
Required Texts: Mishna Berurah by R. Yisrael Meir Kagan
Schedule:
Language:
Faculty: Rabbi Shlomo Zacharow
Jewish Spirituality
Smith
13:15
15:15
Description:
This class will explore Rabbi Kalonymus Kalman Shapira’s, the Piaseczna Rebbe’s, Conscious Community: A Guide to Inner Work, translated by Andrea Cohen-Kiener from the original Hebrew, Bnei Machshava Tova. In her words "Within this volume, Reb Kalonymus teaches the art of self-observation. The reader is exhorted to be mindful of God at all times, with specific advice given for enhancing the experience of prayer. By addressing adults who are not withdrawn from worldly pursuits, Reb Kalonymus has provided a timeless guide to Jewish spirituality that will be an invaluable resource for today's seekers." The class is designed to provide the necessary tools enabling the student to encounter the Divine Presence within and to hear the soul's unique "still small voice." The goal is to develop an expanded Godly consciousness, sensing the Divine in an immanent, visceral and authentic way.
Required Texts:
Schedule:
Language: English
Faculty:
15:00
Mincha & Announcements
15:15
15:30
Artistry of Aggadah
Kurshan
15:30
18:30
Description:
Though the Talmud is commonly regarded as a legal text, it also includes many stories, legends, homilies, and parables, known collectively as Aggadot. In this class we will consider the Aggadot of the Talmud as literary texts that both shed light on the world of the Talmudic sages and contain timeless spiritual and ethical wisdom. Classes will focus on core concepts that inform Talmudic Aggadot, enabling us to construct a veritable Talmudic alphabet from Astrology, Beauty, Courtship and Death to Yearning and Zealotry. We will also consider clusters of stories about key Talmudic figures such as Rabbi Akiva (and his wife, son, and daughter), and discuss the possibilities and problematics of Talmudic biography. Students will emerge from the class with a deep appreciation of the conceptual complexity and artistic sophistication of rabbinic literature, as well as its eternal and ever-evolving relevance.
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Halakha - Eretz Yisrael & Aveilut - Meets at Schocken
Roth
15:30
18:30
Description:
The course is divided into two different subjects. The first is the laws of Aveilut. All relevant and practical matters of the laws of mourning – visiting the sick, purification of the body, burial, shiva, sheloshim, year of mourning and yahrzeit – will be covered, based upon the Shulhan Arukh primarily, with commentators and later posekim. The Eretz Yisrael element of the course will be devoted to halakhic analysis of current issues involved in matters of concern within the State of Isarael, like land for peace, exchange of prisoners for Israeli soldiers being held, and others.
Required Texts: Shulhan Arukh, commentators and later posekim, is handed out in advance. The Eretz Yisrael subjects are dealt with on the basis of academic/halakhic articles from journals.
Schedule:
Language: עברית
Faculty: Rabbi Joel Roth
Kabbalah
Rothberg
15:30
18:30
Description:
Since its mysterious appearance some seven hundred years ago, the Zohar has emerged as one of the most powerful forces in the history of Jewish tradition. The Zohar’s radical hermeneutics, its passionate and often erotic religious intensity, and its mystical formulation of Judaism’s fundamental ideas, have riveted many of Israel’s greatest sages while appalling others. This class is an introduction to the Zohar through a close reading of selected texts. We will approach the text in its original Aramaic alongside Hebrew and English translations. We’ll also explore how practices like guided imagination and chanting can help evoke the power of the text.
Required Texts: Photocopies of material will be distributed.
Schedule: Meets once per week.
Language: English
Faculty:
Mincha & Announcements
15:15
15:30
Chumash
Rothberg
15:30
18:30
Description:
This course focuses on learning Chumash as Torah, that is, the teaching of God. Learning in this way isn’t only about religious conviction but also about methodology. We will seek to understand the method that Jewish tradition has developed for hearing Hashem’s voice speak from the pages of the Chumash. The heart of that method is Midrash, which reads Written Torah through the prism of Oral Torah. We’ll also make use of tools provided by modern Bible scholarship, primarily those approaching the Bible as literature but also those of biblical criticism, and consider how these can enrich classic Jewish learning.
Required Texts: A Full Chumash with Rashi
Schedule: Meets twice per week in Fall and Spring.
Language: English
Faculty:
Advanced Midrash
S. Cohen
15:30
18:30
Description:
Sifrei Devarim, the Tannatic Midrash on the book of Deuteronomy contains some of the most beautiful meditations on the God, Torah and Israel found in Rabbinic literature. This course will be an in-depth study of Sifrei Ha’azinu. We will develop interpretative sensitivity through a close reading of the Biblcal text and the ways in which the Rabbis read and interpret. The class, while building skills and providing tools to analyse Midrashic literature as a method of adapting and making the Bible eternally relevant, will also explore Rabbinic theology and philosophy on concepts such as reward and punishment, Divine Justice, Torah study and more. This course also aims to give the student the tools to evaluate critical textual problems in midrashic texts, to trace the evolution of the use of midrashic texts through their historical evolution, how to evaluate variant textual traditions, and how to use classical and modern commentaries in interpreting midrashim.
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Megilot & the Cycle of the Jewish Calendar
Hoffman
15:30
18:30
Description:
Though organized as one unit in the Tanach, the five megilot were written in different periods and in different styles, they are read in different times of the Jewish calendar and each megilah carries a unique message to its readers. In this class we will explore the texts of the five megilot, studying the historical background as well as the thematic thrust of each book. Also, we will discuss the connection between each book and the time it is read in the liturgical context. Throughout the semester, we will use Midrashic texts to deepen our understanding of the biblical text. Based on our learning, perhaps a new understanding will emerge about what these five books do have in common, despite the differences between them.
Required Texts: Tanakh (must include Hebrew)
Schedule: Once a week (3 hours)
Language: English/עברית
Faculty:
Mincha & Announcements
15:15
15:30
Halakha - Kashrut
Roth
15:30
18:30
Description:
The subject matter of this course is the laws of kashrut, and will include all of the primary matters of kashrut law. The course meets one day a week for two sessions, each of 1.5 hours, one devoted to hevruta and the other to shiur.
Required Texts: The primary sources for the course will be distributed in advance, and will focus primarily on the Shulhan Arukh, commentators thereto and later posekim.
Schedule: Meets once per week.
Language: English
Faculty: Rabbi Joel Roth
Jewish Philosophy & Human Rights
Rothberg
15:30
18:30
Description:
The advent of the Zionist revolution in Jewish thought meant that roles traditionally appointed to God, like the return to Zion and the establishment of global justice, were now to be accomplished through human action. A lesser known stream of religious Zionism understood this to mean not only building a Jewish state through Zionist activism, but also achieving global justice through international law and human rights. In this course, we will explore the halachic thought, theology and philosophy of this stream through a study of primary texts from the late 19th and early 20th century. We will also explore the roots of this school of religious-Zionist human rights activism in earlier tradition, with a special emphasis on Jewish philosophy.
Required Texts: Photocopies of material will be distributed.
Schedule: Meets once per week in the Spring
Language: עברית
Faculty:
Introduction to Midrash
15:30
18:30
Description:
The sages of the rabbinic period were not just adept students of the tradition, they were also creative readers and interpreters as well. Since Scripture was God’s word, it held potential beyond its surface meaning. The sages explored and developed this idea in a literary religious form known as Midrash. This course will be an in-depth overview of the classic rabbinic Midrashim to the Bible. It will provide the student with the tools to handle and analyze major works of classical Tannaitic and Amoraic Midrash. We will examine Midrash as a tool of Biblical interpretation and as a means for asking and answering “big questions” in the realm of theology, psychology, peoplehood and what it means to be human and Jewish. We will pay careful attention to the interpretive process as it unfolds, in the links between different Biblical texts and the many layers of meaning found in the text. We will study texts from Bereshit Rabbah, Pesikta d’Rav Kahana, Mekhilta d’Rabbi Ishmael and Shemot Rabbah.
Required Texts: Required texts: Photocopies to be distributed. Recommended texts: Jastrow Talmudic dictionary, Hebrew/English Tanach.
Schedule: Meets once per week for 3 hours each session, part chevruta and part shiur.
Language: English
Faculty: Rabbi Mordechai Silverstein
Mincha & Announcements
15:15
15:30
Chumash
Rothberg
15:30
18:30
Description:
This course focuses on learning Chumash as Torah, that is, the teaching of God. Learning in this way isn’t only about religious conviction but also about methodology. We will seek to understand the method that Jewish tradition has developed for hearing Hashem’s voice speak from the pages of the Chumash. The heart of that method is Midrash, which reads Written Torah through the prism of Oral Torah. We’ll also make use of tools provided by modern Bible scholarship, primarily those approaching the Bible as literature but also those of biblical criticism, and consider how these can enrich classic Jewish learning.
Required Texts: A Full Chumash with Rashi
Schedule: Meets twice per week in Fall and Spring.
Language: English
Faculty:
Fathers of Social Protests: Four Prophets of the 8th Century
Hollander-Goldfarb
15:30
18:30
Description:
Against the backdrop of great prosperity and great destruction that marked the in the 8th century BCE, four prophets spoke out on social injustice, political misconduct and religious wrongs. Amos, who saw the rot under the glitter, and Hosea who watched the kingdom race towards destruction, spoke in the Northern Kingdom. In Judah we hear the timeless voices of Isaiah and Micah. By the end of that century the kingdom of Israel was gone, and Judah almost followed, but the words of the prophets continue to echo, eerily relevant.
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Schedule: Once a week (3 hours)
Language: עברית
Faculty:
Mincha & Announcements
15:15
15:30
Shechitah Program
Zacharow
15:30
18:30
Description:
By special arrangement. Participation fee.
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Clinical Pastoral Program
Abrams
15:30
18:30
Description:
By special arrangement. Participation fee.
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