Judaism 101 with Rabbi Miriam Grossman
Together we will explore meaningful, practical, and creative ways to integrate Judaism into our lives. From big concepts like God, Shabbat, and Torah, to tangible experiences like blessing candles, joining in prayer and comforting mourners, we will be increasing our capacity to participate in Judaism as a spiritual and liberatory practice. Topics will include: moving through the Jewish calendar and Shabbat; daily embodied Jewish practices; marking lifecycle events personally and in community. While we will touch on some elements of Jewish history and thought, our time together will center home based and collective Jewish practices. Whether you are taking the first step on your Jewish journey, deepening an ongoing Jewish practice, or not sure where to start, absolutely everyone is welcome!
Length & Timing: 10 Mondays at 8-9:15pm ET starting Mar 11 – May 20 ( no class the week of 4/22 for the seders)
Sliding Scale Cost: $300
Spiritual Practices for Uncertain Times with Rabbi Miriam Grossman
In times of immense collective upheaval and suffering, what Jewish spiritual tools and practices can help ground us? As we work for collective liberation, what personal practices can help us build a sense of courage and possibility. In this class we’ll both study and also practice meditation, chant and embodied contemplative practices. The goal here is not to close ourselves off to the suffering of the world. Rather when we use traditional tools for building up our sense of awareness and sacred connection we may find we are better able to face the suffering of the world with a greater sense of shared possibility and power. This class is open to anyone of any background. Join us for four sessions on the Thursday evenings in February
Timing: 4 Wednesdays at 8-9:15pm ET starting March 6
Sliding Scale Cost: $100
(Re-)Introduction to Israel/Palestine
This survey of key topics on Israel/Palestine aims to provide some context and progressive-left political education for the current moment. We will briefly touch on questions that include: How has Zionism related to European and U.S. empire, Jewish persecution, and the Palestinians? What are the main features of the occupation? What forms of Israeli and Palestinian politics have existed within and in opposition to the peace process? How do class and ethnic hierarchies fit into all this? Drawing on academic and other thoughtful sources, we will come together to deepen our knowledge with an eye towards political possibilities for justice and safety for all. While the class is introductory in that it covers core themes of “the conflict” (alternatively known as colonization and resistance), there will be plenty of analysis and attempts to grapple with current events, which may also appeal to those who’ve spent time on this issue or would like to revisit it. There will be short, encouraged readings, and some time for facilitated, good-faith discussion, with the assumption that there will be a range of progressive viewpoints in the Zoom room.
Length & Timing: 5 Tuesdays beginning Feb 20- March 19, 8:00 – 9:15 pm Eastern
Sliding Scale Cost: $125
Rabbi Miriam Grossman
Rabbi Miriam Grossman is a Jewish educator, ritual leader and writer. Her work sits at the intersection of Jewish spirituality, creative practice, and organizing for collective liberation. From 2019- 2023 Rabbi Miriam was the Rabbi of Congregation Kolot Chayeinu, a progressive multi-generational congregation in Brooklyn NY; she also worked as a Rabbinic Intern and then Rabbinic Fellow at Kolot from 2016-2019. Rabbi Miriam was ordained at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in 2019. Prior to Rabbinical School, Rabbi Miriam led innovative Jewish education programs in Chicago at Avodah: the Jewish Service Corps, the Jewish Council on Urban Affairs, and the Jewish Enrichment Center. She is a former fellow with SVARA: A Traditionally Radical Yeshiva. Rabbi Miriam is the co-chair of Tirdof: NY Jewish Clergy for Justice, a member-leader with Jews for Racial and Economic Justice and a cohort member of the arts-based Clergy Studio at the Jewish Studio Project. Her writing has been published in Lilith Magazine, The Forward and NY Daily News.
Jeremy A. Siegman
Jeremy A. Siegman is a grant writer by day, and also an academic who has done research, teaching, and writing on Israel/Palestine. He has taught at CCNY, Harvard, and the University of Chicago on themes including neoliberalism, settler colonialism, and critical social theory, with a focus on the Middle East and the U.S. Jeremy received his Ph.D. in Political Science and Anthropology from the University of Chicago in 2018. He conducted research on Palestinian service workers in Israeli settlement businesses, and the fraught politics of Israeli-Palestinian market encounters. His research was published in the Journal of Palestine Studies, Palestine Square, and PoLAR: Political and Legal Anthropology Review. Jeremy is currently an active member of JFREJ in NYC, and has done volunteer organizing, political education, and writing with JVP, NYC-DSA, and other movement organizations. He previously worked at the Israeli human rights organization B’tselem in Jerusalem.