Jewish texts deal with significant questions about the meaning of life, from the theological and the philosophical to the legal and practical, guiding not just how we look at the world, but how we live in the world. Classes are offered most days of the week, many taught by Rabbi Cohen, several others led by community members. All classes at CBI, unless otherwise noted.
Key Books in Tanach: Judges
The cycle of the period of the Judges spans several hundred years from the days of Joshua to the prophet Samuel. In the absence of strong, central leadership, individuals rose up to meet the challenges facing the nation. Some of these leaders are larger than life, such as Samson and Deborah, while others’ stories are less known yet compelling and thought provoking. Through learning the book of Shoftim, we will compare and contrast these diverse leaders and gain an understanding of this liminal period in Jewish history.
M. Victoria Sutton — Mondays @ 12:00 pm. Begins April 23
Laws of Shabbat: In this class we will re-use R. Eliezer Melamed’s well-organized, clear and concise halakhic (Jewish legal) writings as a springboard to deepen our understanding and our observance of the laws of Shabbat. Each class will focus on a specific area of religious practice and move from general principle to practical details.
R. Yonatan Cohen — Tuesdays @ 12:00 pm.
Command and Commander: Bringing the Divine Back into Halakhic Discourse: The halakha’s brilliance is in its ability to just do – allowing divinely-commanded action to do the talking, so to speak, instead of theology. That’s why God can get locked out of the beit midrash, and why there are so few references to the Divine in halakhic literature. In this class we will examine the inseparability of theology from halakha, opening a back door into the subject matter by examining the experience of commandedness.
Leon Wiener Dow — Tuesday, June 26, 7:00 pm
Midrasha’s Tanach and Talmud (for Teens)
This course is an informal but intensive study group focusing on close thematic readings of the Tanach and Talmud in translation.
Mickey Davis — Wednesdays @ 6:00 pm
Open Sources – Beit Midrash: Learn independently with a hevruta (study partner). Learners of all levels welcome. Want to study with a partner, and not sure where to begin? Contact M. Victoria Sutton with any questions (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we will help you find a partner and get started!
*New! Hilchot Shabbat Chabura – Guided small group study of the Laws of Shabbat. Parallel to Rabbi Cohen’s Laws of Shabbat class, the group will use R Eliezer Melamed’s Laws of Shabbat to deepen their understanding of Shabbat observance. Book available for order at Afikomen. Please let M. Victoria Sutton know if you would like to join. Class is on hiatus for the summer.
M. Victoria Sutton — Wednesdays, 7:45—9:00 pm.
New Talmudic Readings: This volume contains three of Emmanuel Levinas’s last major lectures on the Talmud. Originally compiled and published in French in 1996, it includes the lectures, The Will of Heaven and the Power of Humanity, Beyond the State in the Self, and Who is One-self?. Levinas’s Talmudic commentaries have generated interest in both theological and philosophical circles. These exegetical writings bear on his ever-present concern with ethics, the central focus of his philosophy. One of the most remarkable consequences of this focus, furthermore, is a renewal of philosophy’s capacity to both respect and uncover the deepest meanings central to sacred as well as secular texts.
Muni Schweig — Wednesdays @ 8:00 pm @ the Schweig home
Talmudic Wisdom: Join us for a weekly class that explores key sugyot (talmudic units) that discuss major Jewish questions of practice and thought.
R. Yonatan Cohen • Fridays @ 9:00 am
Study of Kima Kima (Step by Step) by Rabbi Chaim Drukman: Kima examines the sources that deal with the redemption of the Jewish people from the Bible, Talmud, Midrashim and the early Rabbinic sources. Kima Kima provides deep insights into modern Israeli Orthodox thought and philosophy of delivery from exile to redemption and the important part that the State of Israel has played in this process.
R. David Rue • Saturdays @8:30 am-9:15 am