Community Beit Midrash

2018 - 2019

In partnership with Hadar, Hartman, JTS, Pardes, and Yeshivat Maharat

These sessions took place with incredible faculty members!  People were invited to come with a chavruta to learn in the beit midrash, or join a chaburah to learn in a small group!

Schedule from 2019

Thursdays 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm
February 7, March 7, and April 4

Chaburot Descriptions

February 7, 2019
Pardes Institute of Jewish StudiesRabba Yaffa EpsteinThe Power of Love – What the Commandments to Love can Teach us About how to Wield Power in 2019This session will explore the three mitzvot (commandments) to love that are found in the Torah – and what each one can teach us about both Love and Power and the relationship between those two attributes.
DrishaMiriam Gedwiser“That was no lady; that was my wife” – Talmudic stories of temptation, mistaken identity, and remorseWhat if a disguise is the only way to get the communication you need from your rabbi-husband? What happens when the ruse is discovered? We will study aggadot around the theme of mistaken identity between spouses, with an eye toward their messages about relationships and deception.
March 7, 2019
Hadar InstituteRabbi Tali AdlerThe First ShabbatWhile the Torah never tells us that Adam HaRishon observed shabbat, the midrash imagines shabbat as a key part of Adam’s story. We will read a midrash about Adam’s first shabbat and explore what it teaches us about sin, forgiveness, and vulnerability.
MaharatRabbi Jeffrey Fox, Rosh HaYeshivaHalakha as Goalposts – Making Decisions in a Messy worldWe will look at two different approaches to the status of the fetus in Halakha which lead to two very different psakim on abortion. This debate will serve as a model for how we might think about deep debates within the Halakhik system.
April 4, 2019
Jewish Theological SeminaryDr. Benjamin SommerThe Torah’s Laws of Pesah, or, Where Does Rabbinic Judaism Begin?We will take a close look at passages with laws concerning Passover from Exodus and Deuteronomy, highlighting the ways that the Torah suggests that the Jewish law was, from the very beginnings, an evolving tradition.
Shalom Hartman InstituteRabbi Sarah Mulhern“Avadai Heim, V’Lo Avadim Shel Avadim” : The Blurry Line Between Work and Slavery in Jewish Texts and TodayWhat do we mean when we say someone is a slave? What kinds of work constitute slavery? Together we’ll explore these questions by studying some fascinating Rabbinic texts which attempt to draw the line between slavery and legitimate employment, through engaging with the voices of contemporary enslaved people, and through discussion. We’ll seek to apply our insights to the challenging issue of labor trafficking and to our experiences with work in our own lives.
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