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The Jewish Love Affair with Stories

Hosted By: Applied Jewish Spirituality

The Torah begins with the story of creation, and Jewish canonical works of many periods weave law and legend, into a singular tapestry.

Why are stories and storytelling so important? How can stories, especially those that transcend time and space, work on us, change us, deepen or even heal us? What do Midrashic and Hasidic sources say about the power of stories? And how, in a time of crisis, might we use stories to heal our world?

In this online class, we will together explore tales from the biblical, rabbinic, and Hasidic periods, including some lesser-known stories that challenge and complicate simplistic notions about God, what it means to be human, ethics, and meaning. Among them we will find tales of conflict, of miracles, of hope in the face of despair, and of redemption. We will consider the relationship between law and narrative, and the ways in which stories have helped Jewish thinkers as they wrestle with difficult Torah texts.

The class will include careful text study, time for reflection and discussion, and take-home exercises.

This is a free first class from a 4-part course. The other classes will meet on November 29, December 6, December 13.

The event listed here is hosted by a third party. My Jewish Learning/70 Faces Media is not responsible for its content or for errors in the listing.


Rabbi Dr. Ariel Burger

Rabbi Ariel is the author of Witness: Lessons from Elie Wiesel's Classroom, which was an Indie Next List Pick, A Publishers Lunch Buzz Book, and which won the 2019 National Jewish Book Award in Biography. He is also an artist and teacher whose work integrates education, spirituality, the arts, and strategies for social change. Ariel received Orthodox semicha from Yeshivat Bat Ayin, and his PhD in Jewish Studies and Conflict Resolution under Elie Wiesel. A lifelong student of Professor Wiesel, Ariel served as his Teaching Fellow from 2003-2008, after which he directed education initiatives at Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Greater Boston. A Covenant Foundation grantee, Ariel develops cutting-edge arts, storytelling, and educational programming for adults, facilitates workshops for educators, consults to nonprofits, and serves as scholar/artist-in-residence for institutions around the U.S. When Ariel's not learning or teaching, he is creating music, art, and poetry. He lives outside of Boston with his family. Visit him at www.arielburger.com.
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Applied Jewish Spirituality

Applied Jewish Spirituality offers accessible online courses focused on the practices of Jewish meditation and spirituality.
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