Wed, Jan 16 – March 6 | Congregation Beth El, Berkeley | Register here
Sun, Jan 20 – March 10 | Online Only | Register here

The in-person course, which is taught by Rabbi Jeremy Morrison, explores how Judaism became the text-centered religion that it is today, and how history informed Jewish practice. 

We’ll investigate how the Bible was created and ways to read it, and how the history of Israel is different from the story/stories conveyed in the Torah (the first five books of the Hebrew Bible). We’ll learn about Rabbinic Judaism, the Talmud, how prayer became part of Judaism, and how Judaism became a religion that is focused on action more than theology. We’ll delve into the emergence of the modern State of Israel and discuss the complicated relationship between American and Israeli Jews.

Much of our studies together will involve primary texts (in English), and all of it will engage with the question: how is what we are studying relevant to living a Jewish life today? The class will be highly interactive and fun, open and welcoming to all, whether you’ve studied Judaism before or if its your first time.

The online course, taught by Rabbi Ruth Adar, will focus on how the land of Israel has been central to Jewish history, both ancient and modern. This class will examine the history of ancient Israel, the beginnings of rabbinic Judaism, and the modern return to the land. We will also take a look at the specter of antisemitism, both in its ancient roots and its modern expressions.