Welcome to Introduction to the Jewish Experience!
This class is geared to our own East Bay Jewish community, a diverse and vibrant constellation of synagogues, institutions and households. We are co-sponsored by two Reform synagogues, Congregation Beth El of Berkeley and Temple Sinai of Oakland, but we will include a broad range of learning and experiences. People of all backgrounds are welcome and will be treated with respect. This class is administered by Lehrhaus Judaica of Berkeley, a center for adult Jewish learning.
The entire course is made up of 24 class meetings, with additional optional opportunities for experiences. There are three parts, of eight class meetings each, and new students are welcome at the beginning of each part, in October, January, and March. These three parts may be taken in any order.
I’m Rabbi Ruth Adar, the lead teacher and curriculum designer for Intro to the Jewish Experience. I look forward to opening up Judaism for you: helping you to get inside the experiences and world-view of Judaism. Judaism is not simply a religion: it is a culture, indeed, a civilization.
My hope is that if you participate in all three parts of the class (Fall, Winter, Spring) you will be comfortable approaching Jewish experiences on your own, and better yet, you will know exactly what parts of Jewish life interest and excite you.
In other words, you’ll be equipped to get on with your Jewish life!
P.S. – If you are curious about my qualifications, I’m a Reform rabbi, a member of the Central Conference of American Rabbis, a graduate of the Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion, the Divinity School at the University of Chicago, and the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. I’ve been an active participant in the East Bay Jewish scene for over ten years. Before I went to rabbinical school, I was a Regional Outreach Director for the Union of Reform Judaism, a job that attuned me to interfaith issues. I’m well acquainted with both the Catholic and Protestant Christian traditions (my area of concentration in Chicago was History of Religions, and I have studied various Christian theologies.) I look forward to learning with you!
To contact Rabbi Adar:
- 5 Things to Do if You Want to Become a Jew (coffeeshoprabbi.com)