Tag Archives: Adult Learning


Pursuing Justice, Pursued by Love

A few weeks ago, I went with a friend to a prayer service and march, protesting the building of a high-pressure fracked gas pipeline through a residential neighborhood in the Boston area. Standing in a soccer field with parents, kids, and dogs, we sang songs of hope and resilience, crying out against the building of new fossil fuel infrastructure, especially when the town government itself opposes the project. Marching for… Read Article →


Seeing Past, Present, and Future on the Road to Justice

“See”: This simple command opens this week’s parasha and gives it its name, Re’eh. “See: I place before you today the blessing and the curse.” This commandment introduces a moving teaching about how God’s commandments are set before us, and will lead to blessings if we fulfill them and curses if we abandon them. But the opening word is entirely unnecessary; the core message about blessings and curses is clear… Read Article →

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How Hebrew College Helped Me Advance in My Career

Three years ago, I was stuck. I had topped out at my job, unable to grow professionally without a degree in Jewish education. I have always been passionate about Jewish education, and wanted to do more, and to find a way to make a real impact on the field. I saw how my amazing colleagues, who had the education I wanted, would write articles, present at conferences, lead schools and… Read Article →


Me’ah – The Second Time Around

What would motivate a mature woman with limited discretionary time to sit in a classroom for 3 hours once a week and agree to take on at least “some” homework? Me’ah! And why? Easy. Me’ah is so intellectually exciting and learning with other adult learners – rarely like-minded – is the stuff of personal renewal and growth.  The program is geared towards the intelligent adult learner who is not already… Read Article →

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PTJL Alum Family Still Engaged Five Years Later

My wife Amy and I took the Parenting Through a Jewish Lens (then called Ikkarim) at Temple Shalom of Newton in 2009. Our experience brought together a group of people from across the spectrum of Jewish affiliation – we are an interfaith family (I am Jewish, and Amy was raised as a Presbyterian, but is now a Bahá’í ) and we were in good company. We all shared a sense… Read Article →


Planting Seeds in Time

Rosh Hashanah is the head of the year:  thus, we are now in what a friend of mine calls Tush Hashanah.  It is a time for looking both forward and back, much like January, named after the two-faced Roman god Janus who decrees that we spend the first few weeks of the secular year writing the wrong date on our checks. We mused over questions of time and its nature… Read Article →


Tough Questions from My Children: Our New PTJL Coordinator Shares Her Story

What happens to people when they die? Where is God? Can we have a Christmas tree? These were the questions that my children were asking in 2012, the year I decided to participate in Parenting Through a Jewish Lens. I’d been hearing about the class for several years, and it seemed like the right time for me to enroll. The class was held at my synagogue, Dorshei Tzedek, and I was… Read Article →

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Our Parenting Journey

My wife and I heard about the Parenting Through a Jewish Lens course through our synagogue and were intrigued by the concept of parenting with a specific moralistic perspective. We have been confident in our parenting skills and are always looking for ways to help our family thrive. We are guiding our daughters as they discover their place in the world and relationships to others. The course was fascinating and… Read Article →


Leaders in Adult Learning (LAL) Fellowship Orientation

On June 12, the inaugural cohort of the two-year Leaders in Adult Learning fellowship gathered for an orientation with Rabbi Daniel Lehmann, Rabbi Marcia Plumb, Bernice Lerner and Marjorie Freiman. This was the first gathering for the entire cohort, so the fellows shared their personal objectives as well as their plans for translating their learning from the fellowship into action in their home communities during the second year. Plumb led… Read Article →


Beating the Bedtime Blues

The story is told of Reb Zusha, the great Hasidic Master, who lay crying on his deathbed.  His students asked him, “Rebbe, why are you so sad?  Why do you cry?  After all the mitzvahs and good deeds you have done, you will surely get a great reward in heaven!” “I’m afraid!” said Reb Zusha.  “Because when I get to heaven, I know Gods’ not going to ask me, ‘Why… Read Article →