Following Shabbat morning services on June 4, the entire Kehilat Hadar community is invited to stay for a special Lunch and Learn with Joshua Schwartz, former Kehilat Hadar regular, Yeshivat Hadar alumnus, and current PhD candidate in Jewish Studies at NYU. His teaching is titled “Therapeutic Theology in Hasidut.”
The lunch (meat with vegetarian options) will be sponsored by Elijah's Journey as part of their special Shabbat of programming on the eve of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Overnight Walk. Lunch will be free, but RSVPs are requested to ensure enough food. Please RSVP here.
Full Description: The Hasidic masters were healers, whose task it was to prescribe remedies to ills, rooted in the soul. Their opponents cast them as charlatans and escapists, who sought succor from worldly pleasures to ignore the exilic nature of existence. While it is true that the Rebbes recommended ways to defeat sadness, it is wrong to see their response as escapist. Rather, the Hasidic masters presented a therapeutic theology which provided tools to their disciples, which helped them fight back the encroachment of melancholia. In this shiur, we will study texts from various Hasidic teachers who sought to recast difficult emotional states in spiritual terms, and we will see what kinds of opportunities such a framing can present.