Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Tuesday Tel Aviv Torah: Encountering God - Avraham and the Birah Doleket

What happens the moment before God speaks to Avraham for the first time?

What is it that Avraham sees or does that convinces God to enter into dialogue with him, to create a covenant between them?

Does it provide us with any clues as to how we can encounter the divine in our own lives?

This week we studied a Midrash about Avraham that suggests different ways in which people can hear God's voice. The Shiur included guest appearances from Jewish philosopher Maimonides, English poet Wordsworth, Talmudic heretic Elisha Ben Abuya and author of ‘The God gene’.

Click here for the source sheet.
Click here for the audio recording.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Jerusalem Shiur & Tuesday Tel Aviv Torah: Between Lag BaOmer & Shavuot

Both Lag Ba'Omer and Shavuot provide ideas on how we should (and should not) learn Torah.

In preparation for the festival, this week looked at some famous stories from the Gemara in order to explore questions revolving around the authority of the Rabbis to radically re-read text, how we should transfer tradition from one generation to the other, and maintaining the balance between arguing for truth on the one hand, and becoming cruel and ambivalent towards others on the other.

Click here for the
source sheet.

Click here for the
audio recording of the Jerusalem Shiur (90 mins)

Click here for the
audio recording of the Tuesday Tel Aviv Torah Shiur (60 mins).

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Tuesday Tel Aviv Torah: The Theological Significance of the Holocaust

The final week of the mini-series on reward and punishment looked at the question of the Shoah .

It began by studying the disagreement as to whether the Shoah constituted a unique event. Following this, we looked at the views of different theologians – from those who view it as punishment for sins (such as the Satmar Rebbe) to those who claim it portends the Death of God (such as Richard Rubenstein), as well as lots of positions in between (Eliezer Berkovits, Emil Fackenheim, Elie Wiesel and Irving Greenberg.)

Click here for an
audio recording.

Click here for the
source sheet.