90@190 Kehilat Hadar and Mechon Hadar's Beit Midrash


January 24, 2011 - 7:30pm
January 31, 2011 - 7:30pm
February 7, 2011 - 7:30pm
February 14, 2011 - 7:30pm
February 28, 2011 - 7:30pm
March 7, 2011 - 7:30pm


Mechon Hadar, 190 Amsterdam Ave., at 69th St.

Come to Kehilat Hadar and Mechon Hadar's Open Beit Midrash on Monday nights to engage first-hand with texts in havruta. Food and energetic atmosphere provided.

Class options include: Torah as a First Philosophy: The Life and Thought of Emmanuel Levinas, taught by Rabbi Ari Weiss, S'fat Emet: Speaking a Language of Truth, taught by Aviva Richman, Theological Boundaries: What Heresies are Unredeemable? (Perek Helek - the 11th chapter of Sanhedrin), taught by Rabbi Ethan Tucker, Key Rabbinic Texts on Blessings, taught by Shuli Shinnar, "Broken Vessels, Hidden Sparks": The Mystical System of the Ari (Isaac Luria), taught by Rabbi David Ingber

Torah as a First Philosophy: The Life and Thought of Emmanuel Levinas (first two weeks only!)
Taught by Rabbi Ari Weiss
Emmanuel Levinas is widely recognized as the philosopher of the "other" and "Ethics as a First Philosophy."  Levinas also wrote extensively on a wide range of Jewish topics, including his famed Talmudic Readings.  In this course, we will explore the "Hebraic" elements of Levinas's thought as it relates to Philosophy, ethics, and contemporary society.  Specifically we will attempt to answer the following: Is Torah ethical?  Is it relevant?  and what is the relationship between Torah and philosophy?

S'fat Emet: Speaking a Language of Truth
Taught by Aviva Richman
Learn selections from the S'fat Emet ("Language of Truth") - a collection of drashot on the weekly parsha by the second Gerrer Rebbe.  Rabbi Yehuda Leib Alter shared his words with his Hasidim in the small town of Ger, near Warshaw, in the late nineteenth century.  By examining the array of earlier sources that served as building blocks for his drashot and "speaking his language" in our own times, we will explore the inter-relationshipo between the self, the Divine, Torah, and community. 

Theological Boundaries: What Heresies are Unredeemable? (Perek Helek - the 11th chapter of Sanhedrin)
Taught by Rabbi Ethan Tucker
Learn this classic aggadic perek of Talmud and take a tour of several core issues in Rabbinic thought and Rabbinic interpretation of Tanakh.
Note: this is a continuation of a class from the fall.  Newcomers are welcome to join.

Key Rabbinic Texts on Blessings
Taught by Shuli Shinnar
We will explore different Talmudic texts' and commentators' understanding of the function, purpose, and meaning of saying brachot, blessings and benedictions.  Our discussion will address issues ranging from the purposes of saying blessings before eating or performing mitzvot to the similarities and differences between prayer and blessings.  Working through Rabbinic texts, we will pay close attention to the imagery and legal concepts introduced in order to characterize the requirement to say brachot.  Through our examination of these texts we will attempt to develop a conceptual framework to understand the Rabbinic institution of brachot.

"Broken Vessels, Hidden Sparks The Mystical System of the Ari (Isaac Luria)
Taught by Rabbi David Ingber
The mystical philosophy of Isaac Luria, known as Ha'Ari (The Lion), completely revolutionized the Jewish world in the latter part of the 16th century.  The mystical landscape was forever changed by his unique system which became the accepted worldview of Jewish mystics to this day!  His Or Chadash, or new light, has shown brightly through the continued interpretation and re-interpretation until the present.
This course will look at how the Ari's system evolved in the ensuing centuries as teachers explored the meaning and ramifications of his ideas.  Thinkers like Moshe Luzzatto, Elijah of Vilna, the Baal Shem Tov, Rabbi Kook, and Reb Zalman, Sh'Y, have all looked to the Ari as a source of inspiration.  We will study Lurianic Kabbalah as it is refracted through the centuries in the thought of these great masters.  This class will be accessible to beginners and challenging for more advanced students.  No prior knowledge required.  Just an open heart and mind. 


Learn a text of your choosing in havruta
Have you always wanted to study a Jewish text in the original?  Are you looking for a study partner, or already have one and are looking for a community of learners?  Join us in the Hadar Beit Midrash.  We will help match you with a learning partner and provide staff resources to help you learn a text of your choosing. 

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