Beyond Dispute: Debates That Shape Jewish Life

Debates—philosophical, spiritual, ethical, and cultural—are at the heart of Judaism and Jewish life: Are religion and reason compatible? Can Jewish law change, based on context? How do we teach and talk about the Holocaust and the State of Israel? Should we prioritize Jewish or universal causes in our giving? Is Jewish tradition intrinsically patriarchal and ableist? Is our relationship with God defined by human obligation or divine compassion?

Each session of Beyond Dispute includes a short video lecture featuring a JTS faculty member, text study, and guided group discussion led by Rabbi Charlie.  Join us for this unique opportunity to explore how these debates have been manifested over the course of Jewish history, and to discuss their continued resonance for contemporary Jewish life.

We conclude our Zoom course with three evening sessions at 7:30 p.m.

Apr. 12 – “What do we Mean by Jewish Continuity”

Apr. 19 – “How Much Should Tragedy Define Us? The Holocaust in Contemporary Jewish Life”

Apr. 29 – “Can Commitment and Critique Coexist? Teaching Israel in the 21st Century”

Although this is a continuation of the course we began in the fall, we will be starting new material, so one could easily join the class at this point. Information for the final five sessions will be forthcoming.

All participants will receive access to the secure online platform for the course, which includes the course videos and study texts. Participants may print their own sources for insertion into their binders. Access will also allow participants to review material for sessions they may have missed or look at the material before class.

If you are interested, or if you know someone who is not a member who might be interested, please contact the office as soon as possible, so that we can order your binder and JTS can provide you with the online access code.  We will provide you with a Zoom link for the course.

Fee: $10 members/$25 non-members