Mussar

Updated Oct. 26, 2018
 
The study of Mussar, an integrative experience of studying values through texts, meditation, and personal practice continues this year with two new groups forming immediately after the High Holy Days.
 
Mussar offers a Jewish pathway and a set of teachings that will help you find your way toward becoming your best self, and our community to reach its higher potential. Mussar might best be described as “Jewish spiritual ethics” and has been practiced for centuries by people who sought to cultivate and strengthen the qualities of the inner mensch.
 
Mussar has been undergoing a revival in the Jewish world, and we are fortunate to be able to offer this curriculum created by The Mussar Institute, the leaders in the field. This program is endorsed by the Union for Reform Judaism and is suitable for all, regardless of level of Jewish knowledge. There are no prerequisites nor is Hebrew required.
 
Come join in small group study—one course option led by Denise Kleinman, the other options led by Rabbi Amy Cohen—as we explore together in a safe and caring environment what the Jewish tradition has to teach us about the traits of humility, gratitude, equanimity, patience, order, and honor, among others—and discover how you can improve these qualities in your own life. 
 
There are three options to take Mussar this year:
 
  • A Taste of Mussar
    This four-session class is led by Rabbi Amy Cohen, starting Oct. 7. Registration is now closed.
  • Seeking Everyday Holiness
    ​Every other Sunday, 11:35 a.m.-12:50 p.m., beginning Nov. 11 (see dates below). Register now. This class is led by Denise Kleinman. (Learn more about the Everyday Holiness course.) The course, including the textbook, costs $90. If you already own the book or don't want to purchase it through Temple Beth Shalom, the course costs $75. You will receive a copy of the course textbook "Everyday Holiness: The Jewish Spiritual Path of Mussar" by Alan Morinis, and through group meetings as well as personal study and practice, we will explore these soul traits together.  Course dates: Nov. 11, Dec. 2, Jan. 6, Jan. 20, Feb. 3, Feb. 24, March 3, March 10, March 31, April 14.
  • A Season of Mussar II
    ​Thursdays at 9:30 a.m., starting in October. Registration is now closed.
    Taught by Rabbi Amy Cohen, this program runs for 13 weeks and operates on the same principles as Seeking Everyday Holiness. This higher-level course focuses on a different set of six middot. More-advanced Mussar practices are added to the program. Participation in Seeking Everyday Holiness is a prerequisite to this course.