18 January: Smashing the tablets: Moses on trial
The Torah closes with a tribute to Moses, the greatest prophet we’ve ever known. This session will explore his story, his personality, his leadership and – on occasion – his lack of leadership.
15 February: Why aren’t rabbis called priests?
Once upon a time Judaism had a Temple and a priesthood; now it has synagogues and rabbis. This session will explore this transition, what went before it, and why synagogues are here to stay.
Thursday 15 March: Stoning our leaders: Judaism and democracy in action
Today, Israel proudly proclaims itself a Jewish and democratic state, and even in our ancient texts, the Israelites kept a stern eye on their leaders. From Biblical times to modern Jerusalem, this session will explore Jewish values of civics and responsible leadership.
Thursday 19 April: Independence day or disaster? Different narratives to 1948
Breaking news, Israel is a bit controversial. But behind every controversy there are differing narratives: two people looking at the same set of facts and reaching different conclusions. This session will consider various approaches to the State of Israel – Israeli approaches and Palestinian approaches – in the best spirit of open dialogue and discussion.
Thursday 17 May: Now therefore write ye #1: everything you ever wanted to know about the Hebrew Bible
We write it, read it, sometimes chant it, but what actually is it? This session will explore the history and content of the Hebrew Bible, along with how different Jewish traditions approach it. (It will form a perfect pair with next month’s J101 session but they also stand alone!)
Thursday 14 June: Now therefore write ye #2: what happened after the Bible finished?
Jewish stories and thought didn’t stop happening just because the Bible finished. This session will look at what texts came next and what relevance they have for us today. (It will form a perfect pair with lsat month’s J101 session but they also stand alone!)
Thursday 19 July: Shabbat: what is it and why do we do it?
Judaism has made a few contributions to the world but a six-day week followed by one day of rest is one of the most notable. Together we’ll look at its purpose, traditions and how modern Jews can live it.
All sessions will be led by student Rabbi, Gabriel Webber.
Venue: the Garden Room, Friargate Meeting House