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Course #3 - Oasis in Time: The Gift of Shabbat in a 24/7 World

  Course dates:
Tuesday 13.03- Class 1 -16:30-18:15 / 18:15-19:30 Dinner

Sunday 18.03- Class 2 16:30-18:15 / 18:15-19:30 Dinner

Sunday 25.03 -Class 3 16:30-18:15 / 18:15-19:30 Dinner

Tuesday 10.04 Class 4 18:30-20:00 / 20:00-20:30 dinner

Sunday 15.04- Class 5 16:30-18:15 / 18:15-19:30 dinner 

Date of completion of course...coming soon followed by a special Lichayim  and dinner completion of course 3

 

Course Overview

  The Gift of Rest
What role does net worth play in how we define our success? The gift of Shabbat provides a priceless sense of self-worth in our most basic state, without feeling the need to achieve.

  The Gift of Investment
The serenity and enjoyment of Shabbat is the culmination of a week’s work. Jewish culture’s emphasis on preparing for Shabbat presents a model for getting more out of life’s experiences by maximizing the effort we invest into shaping them.

  The Gift of Love
The light of the Shabbat candles and heightened spiritual awareness on Shabbat illuminates the need to value the uniqueness of others and to invest in family and interpersonal relationships. This lesson outlines a clear roadmap for how to approach conflict resolution.

  The Gift of Pleasure
In this time of great bounty, we have never found it harder to negotiate moderation with healthy pleasure. Shabbat’s definition of holiness is a prototype for how to synthesize spirituality and enjoyment.

  The Gift of Purpose
Shabbat offers a transcendent frame of mind to objectively evaluate our work and add meaningful focus to our pursuit of a satisfying career. Shabbat’s neat construct of thirty-nine creative activities offers a framework to define a life of purposeful accomplishment.

  The Gift of Every Moment
From the multisensory experience of Havdalah, we learn how to introduce serenity into the chaotic moments. By identifying the spirituality within the mundane, we transform our week into one that is entirely Shabbat.

 

Course #2 was completed 

Course #2 - Medicine and Morals: Your Jewish Guide Through Life's Tough Decisions

  Course dates:
Sunday 24.12- Class 1 -12:30-13:45 / 13:45-15:45 Lunch

Sunday 7.01- Class 2 16:30-18:15 / 18:15-19:30 dinner

Sunday 14.01 -Class 3 13:30-15:15 / 15:15-15:45 quick lunch

Sunday 21.01 Class 4 16:30-18:15 / 18:15-19:30 dinner

Tuesday 30.01- Class 5 16:30-18:15 / 18:15-19:30 dinner & Tu Bishvat

Sunday 18.02 - Class 6 14:30-16:15 / 16:15-17:45 & dinner & special Lichayim completion of course 2

Lesson 1
Choosing Life: The Obligation to Seek Treatment
This lesson examines Jewish perspectives on pursuing medical care, as well as declining it. Is it ever acceptable, or even preferable, to sim­ply rely on faith, prayer, and one’s own resources? How does Judaism justify medical intervention? And is it an obligation or a choice? May other family members force us to seek treatment that we do not want? This lesson examines the ethics of issues involving patient auton­omy within the modern health care system.

Lesson 2
Flesh of My Flesh: Organ Transplants in Jewish Law
Hundreds of thousands of people find their lives hanging in the balance as they hope for the gift of life in the form of a vital organ such as a heart, lung, or kidney. By receiving an organ, they are literally given a new lease on life. Yet there is a tremendous shortage of available organs. Does Jewish law allow the donation of organs, either from a live donor or one who is recently deceased? Do we have the authority to give a body part away? Might it go further, actively encouraging or even mor­ally compelling one to donate under certain circumstances? This lesson provides a nuanced and compassionate look at the sensitive ethical issues governing organ donation.

Lesson 3
Rolling the Dice: Risky and Experimental Treatments 
Often, people with rare or incurable illnesses consider untested experimen­tal treatment, gambling that they will be cured. May one participate in an experimental treatment with no guarantee of success that also has the dan­ger of shortening life? Can we define the allowable odds? Do our personal preferences and values hold any weight? And does the same hold true for children? Does it matter that participating in this experimental treatment will provide important knowl­edge that will be helpful in curing others?

Lesson 4
New Beginnings: The Ethics of Reproductive Technologies 
Many couples struggle with infertility. In their efforts to bear a child, they are often cast into the complicated ethical web of the new reproductive technologies, many of which call into question the very definition of a parent. In the age of sperm donation, egg donation, and surrogacy, can a child have more than two parents? How does Juda­ism look at “designer babies”? Can we pre-select the gender of the child to match parent preferences or to prevent genetic illnesses? How far must one go in the quest for biological children, and what recourse is there for those who are unable to bear children of their own?

Lesson 5
With You In Mind: Ethical Treatment of the Mentally Disabled
The mentally ill have often been viewed in society as possessed by the devil, or otherwise evil. Jewish law, however, has long recognized this as a dis­ease, and acknowledges both the limitations of responsibility that this state imposes, as well as the essential humanity of the mentally ill. Jewish law recognizes that there may well be islands of ability at the same time that limitations exist. It encourages the maximum participation possible of those with mental illnesses, while outlining the role the community must play in protecting their interests. The lesson also considers the integration of indi­viduals who may suffer from mental retardation, and the value of engaging them actively in Jewish life.

Lesson 6
Secret Code: Genetics and the Ethics of Patient Confidentiality
A basic presumption of modern medical practice is that patients have a right for their medical history to be kept confidential unless they explicitly waive those rights. What happens, however, when those records contain infor­mation that might impact other family members? Do children have the right to know they are carriers of a particular disease, or may the parent keep that information private? This lesson looks at some ways of balancing the harm to the individual whose privacy is invaded against the need to provide family members with vital health information.

 

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Course #1 - Judaism Decoded: The Origins and Evolution of Jewish Tradition

Course dates:
01.10.2017         29.10.2017
15.10.2017         05.11.2017
22.10.2017         12.11.2017

Have you ever questioned the authenticity of our Jewish tradition?
 
Is there any evidence supporting the veracity of Judaism as we practice it today?
 
What was invented by the rabbis, and what can be traced back to ancient biblical verses?
 
And how do contemporary rabbis know how to adapt biblical law for modern times?
 

Just as science follows the scientific method, Jewish tradition has its own system to ensure its authenticity remains intact.
 

 
Judaism Decoded sheds light on the mysteries surrounding biblical interpretation. How do we know our interpretation is true? If it is true, why is it subject to differences of opinion? And with so many interpretations to choose from, how do we know which one reflects its original intent?
 

Discover the sheer elegance of the “source code” on which Torah law is built; enjoy the razor-sharp reasoning, intelligent debate, and compelling arguments of the Talmudic dialectic; and get a fascinating, behind-the-scenes glimpse of the most intellectually sophisticated religion in existence.
 

 
1. THE DYNAMIC DUO
If we have a written law, why do we need tradition? And if we have a tradition, what’s the point of a written law? Discover the brilliance of this binary system, and how it has kept Jewish tradition intact for millennia.
 

 
2. A FORMULA FOR ETERNITY
Circumstances change, and, in most cases, so do the rules—unless, that is, the rules were created as principles with a unique formula to make them apply to any situation that may arise. Explore the systematic formula through which Jewish law is applied to solve new, modern-day dilemmas.
 

 
3. RABBIS MAKING RULES
Is my rabbi allowed to change the law when he deems it necessary? When do rabbis have the power to legislate new laws? And what prevents a rabbi from unilaterally changing the face of Judaism?
 

 
4. DEBATING THE DIVINE
The Talmud is filled with all kinds of debates. If the law is Divine, should there be any room for discussion? When there are differences of opinion, how do we determine the law? And why does the Talmud record opinions that were ultimately overruled?
 

 
5. LAWS THAT EXPIRE
While most Jewish practices are as relevant today as ever, some laws have reasons that no longer apply. When does a law expire? How is it revoked? And why might we choose to continue a practice even once its rationale is no longer relevant?
 

 
6. EVIDENCE FOR SINAI
Judaism encourages us to question. How do we know the Torah is true? Why was Maimonides so  convinced about the historic truth of the revelation at Sinai? Is there any empirical evidence to support his claim?
 
 

 


Click here to register for this series of courses