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Hebrew College

School

Hebrew College

HIS510

Zionism

BTI Category

Semester

Church History/History of Religions

SP24

In this seminar we will explore the foundational ideas and events of the Zionist movement from its beginnings through the creation of the state. The course will begin by placing Zionism within the wider canvass of late 19th century European history. We will then move through Zionist history in a roughly chronological fashion, looking at the major thinkers of the movement - Herzl, Ahad Ha-am, Kook, Jabotinsky - while also covering the major political events - The Zionist Congresses, the Balfour Declaration, The British Mandate, etc. While this course is not designed to focus solely on the conflict with the Palestinians, the relationship between Zionism and the Arab communities within and around Palestine will be one of our primary concerns.

Professor

Class Day & Time

Dan Judson

J TERM

9:30 am - 4:00 pm

Grading Option

P/F or audit

Credits

1

Online?

N

Professor Approval Req'd?

Y

Prerequisites?

N

Notes

Tuesday-Thursday, January 10-12

School

Hebrew College

INT519

Introduction to Christianity

BTI Category

Semester

Interreligious Learning

SP24

Introduction to Christianity will focus on the histories, beliefs, and practices of contemporary Christian communities. The intensive course will be conducted on-site at churches and Christian organizations in greater Boston, providing students with the opportunity to network with other important actors in the religious landscape and exposure to the various expressions of Christianity in Boston. The course will be facilitated by Rev. Dr. Soren Hessler, former Associate Director of the Miller Center for Interreligious Learning & Leadership, and will include guest lectures and workshops led by area clergy and religious professionals. While the course is primarily designed to orient emerging Jewish religious leaders to the traditions of Christianity, non-Jewish students are welcome to enroll.

Professor

Class Day & Time

Soren Michael Hessler

J TERM

See notes

Grading Option

P/F or audit

Credits

1

Online?

N

Professor Approval Req'd?

N

Prerequisites?

N

Notes

Classes during January 17-January 20 week w/academic requirements due by end of May; January 16 - January 19, 2024; Tuesday-Thursday 9:00 am - 5:00 pm and Friday 9:00 am - 1:00 pm

School

Hebrew College

PHI147

Introduction to Buddhism for Jewish Leaders

BTI Category

Semester

Interreligious Learning

SP24

This course introduces the foundations of Buddhism in India, integrating doctrinal and meditative traditions while tracing their development through the three vehicles (yanas) throughout Asia. Topics include ethics and wisdom, emptiness and compassion, and the inherent wakefulness of all beings. Special attention will be given to Tibetan Buddhism, which has resonated with Judaism on such a fundamental level, including an introduction to the deity traditions of Tibet. The course will include a map of American Buddhist communities and a discussion of Jewish-Buddhist dialogue, double-belonging, and secular mindfulness. The week will close with a visit to a Boston Buddhist meditation center.

Professor

Class Day & Time

Amelia Hall & Judith Simmer-Brown

J TERM

See notes

Grading Option

Audit

Credits

0

Online?

N

Professor Approval Req'd?

N

Prerequisites?

N

Notes

January 16 - January 19, 2024; Tuesday-Thursday 9:00 am - 5:00 pm and Friday 9:00 am - 1:00 pm

School

Hebrew College

EDU850

Foundations of Jewish Education

BTI Category

Semester

Judaic Studies

SP24

Jewish Education is a practical art that has a theoretical base with application to practice. It has roots in Western industrial schooling as well as traditional pedagogies of teaching and learning in rabbinic antiquity. Recent innovation has drawn upon social, emotional and spiritual modes of learning to redefine Jewish Education for the 21st century. Jewish Education is a vast field including all kinds of schooling, camping, experiential and wilderness learning as well as college campus and adult and community learning. Students will be introduced to relevant theories and key pedagogical methods in the field of Jewish education so that they become familiar with the discourse of the field and can be skilled, innovative and knowledgeable about Jewish teaching and learning. The course incorporates the ways in which ordination students will utilize educational frameworks and approaches in their specific clergy roles.

Professor

Class Day & Time

Michael Shire

T

2:30 - 4:00 pm

Grading Option

Letter or P/F

Credits

2

Online?

N

Professor Approval Req'd?

N

Prerequisites?

N

Notes

Online, asynchronous, with monthly synchronous meetings via Zoom

School

Hebrew College

HEBW611

Aramaic

BTI Category

Semester

Languages

SP24

Students will learn the basic features of Aramaic grammar, focusing on the dialect of Aramaic used in the Babylonian Talmud. A solid knowledge of Hebrew grammar will be expected, so that students can take advantage of systematic correspondences between Hebrew and Aramaic grammar. Some experience reading Talmudic texts will also be presumed. The texts that are read consist primarily of aggadic materials from the Babylonian Talmud. At the end of the course, other texts with liturgical and halakhic significance will be read as well.

Professor

Class Day & Time

Harvey Bock

M

2:30 - 4:00 pm

Grading Option

Letter or P/F

Credits

2

Online?

N

Professor Approval Req'd?

Y

Prerequisites?

Y

Notes

Non-Hebrew College ordination students need permission from the instructor to enroll

School

Hebrew College

JTH630

Theology of the Jewish Year

BTI Category

Semester

Judaic Studies

SP24

The calendar, with its cycle of sacred observances, is the great teacher of Judaism's practices, values and theology. Our study will explore key texts from the Bible to Hasidism, beginning with Shabbat, the core of sacred time, an embodied practice of immersive locatedness and emplacement that transforms somatic awareness with transformative effect. The holidays will be presented as an interplay between solar and lunar rhythms. For every holy day we will attempt to uncover the ideas that motivate the rituals and that transform ceremonies into spiritual practices. Hasidic texts will be read with an eye to interiority and the personal and collective quest for meaning.

Professor

Class Day & Time

Nehemia Polen

R

2:30 � 4:00 pm

Grading Option

Letter or P/F

Credits

2

Online?

N

Professor Approval Req'd?

N

Prerequisites?

Y

Notes

Requires Hebrew 8

School

Hebrew College

JTH838

Modern Jewish Thought

BTI Category

Semester

Judaic Studies

SP24

This course will explore the writings of major Jewish thinkers living in the modern era and place them in the context of their historical setting. The class will focus on the various ways these thinkers - from Mendelssohn to Buber - understood the dynamic relationship between inherited tradition and modern conceptions of religious life.

Professor

Class Day & Time

Dan Judson

R

2:30 - 4:00 pm

Grading Option

Letter or P/F

Credits

2

Online?

N

Professor Approval Req'd?

N

Prerequisites?

N

Notes

N

School

Hebrew College

PRC850

You Matter: An Exploration of Addiction, Recovery and Spirituality

BTI Category

Semester

Practical/Pastoral Theology

SP24

Much is born from the human experience of brokenness. In fact, the world itself, as the Torah and Jewish mysticism teach, was created out of chaos and darkness (tohu v'vohu). Hardship and suffering however, have always preceded great creativity and advance in Judaism and can be one of humanity's great teachers. At Beit T'Shuvah, we treat and educate those who are among the most acutely broken in our society. They respond to labels such as junkie, criminal, alcoholic, gambler, and thief. What we have learned during our over thirty years of serving the Jewish community, is that the destructive behaviors of addiction and crime are truly the most severe symptoms of a deeper spiritual malady. The spiritual malady of a division of self or brokenness.

This course is designed for learners who are open and willing to explore the brokenness that exists within every human heart, including their own. We will study Jewish texts, liturgy, and spiritual practices as a means to uncover their healing potential. We will primarily focus on addiction, its roots, and its consequences as a specific manifestation of acute brokenness. We will engage with Beit T'Shuvah residents, teachers, and leaders who work and live in a community dedicated to spiritual practice of dailyt'shuvah' the spiritual means by which we restore wholeness to the fractured. And we will examine ourselves as Jewish spiritual leaders and our capacity to confront, counsel, and teach those most severely broken through the place where our hearts, souls, and the Jewish tradition meet.

Professor

Class Day & Time

Staff of the Elaine Breslow Institute of Beit T'Shuvah

ASYNC

ASYNC

Grading Option

Letter or P/F

Credits

2

Online?

Y

Professor Approval Req'd?

N

Prerequisites?

N

Notes

N

School

Hebrew College

INT510

From Diversity to Pluralism

BTI Category

Semester

Interreligious Learning

SP24

We live in one of the most religiously diverse societies in the history of humankind. How can we cultivate an ethos of dignified engagement both within our communities of practice and across religious traditions? What are the ethical underpinnings "values and dispositions" that support such an effort? What theological resources might we draw on for this sacred work? What are some historical and contemporary models of individual and communal engagement that we can learn from as we develop our intra/interreligious leadership capacities?

Professor

Class Day & Time

Or Rose

J TERM

See notes

Grading Option

P/F or audit

Credits

2

Online?

N

Professor Approval Req'd?

N

Prerequisites?

N

Notes

Events & classes during January 17-January 20 week w/academic reuirements due by end of May; MLK Day or weekend attend one of the interreligious events described below: Tuesday, January 16, through Thursday, January 18, 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. Wednesday, January 17, Miller Center Interreligious learning event - Torah & Dharma: Buddhism and Judaism 7:30-9:00 p.m. Friday, January 19, 8:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.

School

Hebrew College

INT600

Introduction to Islam for Jewish Leaders

BTI Category

Semester

Interreligious Learning

SP24

In this intensive course students will explore key concepts, practices, and historical events from the Islamic tradition. Special attention will be given to the interaction of Jews and Muslims, past and present. We will also explore specific challenges and opportunities facing contemporary Muslims in the United States. The course will be taught by Imam Taymullah Abdur Rahman, author of 44 Ways to Manhood, and former imam for Harvard University, the Massachusetts Department of Correction, and Northeastern University. The course will include presentations by religious and cultural figures and a Friday Jumuah service.

Professor

Class Day & Time

Taymullah Abdur-Rahman

J TERM

See notes

Grading Option

Audit

Credits

0

Online?

N

Professor Approval Req'd?

N

Prerequisites?

N

Notes

While the course is primarily designed to orient emerging Jewish religious leaders to the traditions of Islam, non-Jewish students are welcome to enroll. January 16 - January 19, 2024; Tuesday-Thursday 9:00 am - 5:00 pm and Friday 9:00 am - 1:00 pm

School

Hebrew College

BIB716

The Prophets in Bible, Theology and Jewish Life

BTI Category

Semester

Judaic Studies

SP24

This course will introduce the major literary prophets, with special focus on Isaiah and Jeremiah. We will examine the place of the prophets in biblical history, their theological and political roles, and their enduring literary and moral stature. Major themes include the centrality of ethics and concern for the poor; attitudes toward Temple, ritual, and Torah; covenant, restoration, and the future of Israel. Readings from classical meforshim and modern scholars. Attention to the beauty and power of the Hebrew text will be a central emphasis. You will be asked to read with fluency, nuance and grasp of meaning.

Professor

Class Day & Time

Justin David

R

11:30 am - 1:00 pm

Grading Option

Letter or P/F

Credits

2

Online?

N

Professor Approval Req'd?

N

Prerequisites?

Y

Notes

Prerequisite: Hebrew 7 or above.

School

Hebrew College

HEBW606

Hebrew for Tanakh Study 2

BTI Category

Semester

Languages

SP24

Students will work on the language of the biblical text and of the related midrash and traditional rabbinic commentary assigned in the Shanah Aleph Bereshit course, with which this course will be closely coordinated. Grammatical topics will be presented in the context of the text study.

Professor

Class Day & Time

Harvey Bock

MW

M: 11:30 am - 1:00 pm, W: 11:45 am - 1:15 pm

Grading Option

Letter or P/F

Credits

3

Online?

N

Professor Approval Req'd?

Y

Prerequisites?

Y

Notes

Prerequisite: Hebrew for Tanakh Study or equivalent
Non-Hebrew College ordination students require permission from the instructor

School

Hebrew College

INT533

Calling Out from the Depths:_The Book of Psalms in Jewish and Christian Life

BTI Category

Semester

Interreligious Learning

SP24

For centuries, Jews and Christians have turned to the Book of Psalms in times of joy and thanksgiving, and in times of sadness and lament. However, there have been far fewer opportunities for members of these two communities and others to explore these ancient poetic texts_together_as fellow spiritual seekers. What do we share in common? Where do we differ? How might reading these sources with people with different religious or ideological commitments impact our relationship with the text?_

Professor

Class Day & Time

Or Rose and Andrew Davis

W

4:30 -6:30 pm

Grading Option

Letter or P/F

Credits

1

Online?

N

Professor Approval Req'd?

N

Prerequisites?

N

Notes

February 7, 14, 21, 28, March 13 & 20

School

Hebrew College

JTH719

Medieval Jewish Thought

BTI Category

Semester

Judaic Studies

SP24

We will examine the key triad God-Torah-Israel through the views of four seminal thinkers of the medieval period: Rashi, Maimonides (Rambam), Nahmanides (Ramban), and Halevi.
Rashi is the quintessential Rabbinic Jew, whose views are shaped by the world of Talmud and Midrash; Maimonides is arguably the Rabbinic tradition's greatest philosopher-theologian as well as the master systematizer of Talmudic law; Nahmanides is a consummate Talmudist, Bible commentator, and kabbalist; Halevi is the romantic poet with a post-philosophical sensibility and passionate love of Israel's land and Torah, defending the faith with eloquence and conviction.

Professor

Class Day & Time

Nehemia Polen

T

11:30 am - 1:00 pm

Grading Option

Letter or P/F

Credits

2

Online?

N

Professor Approval Req'd?

N

Prerequisites?

N

Notes

N

School

Hebrew College

JTH918

Contemporary Jewish Thought

BTI Category

Semester

Judaic Studies

SP24

This course has two components. In the first half of the semester we will explore American Jewish history focusing on themes of particular importance to rabbinical students like the emergence of denominations and the evolution of the American synagogue. The second half of the course is a survey of the seminal Jewish thinkers who wrote in an American context such as Mordecai Kaplan, Abraham Joshua Heschel, Joseph Soloveitchik, Judith Plaskow and others. We will ultimately be aiming to place our own historical moment and our own theologies within broader historical/theological frameworks.

Professor

Class Day & Time

Dan Judson

T

11:30 am - 1:00 pm

Grading Option

Letter or P/F

Credits

2

Online?

N

Professor Approval Req'd?

N

Prerequisites?

N

Notes

N

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