Tapestry: A Community Celebration of Learning

Saturday, January 6, 2018 at 7:00 PM
6:15 PM - Registration
7:00 PM - Community Havdalah
7:35 PM - 8:25 PM - Session #1 Choose 1 class to attend
8:35 PM - 9:25 PM - Session #2 Choose 1 class to attend
9:30 PM - Dessert Reception and Celebration

Tapestry brings together hundreds of people from diverse ages, backgrounds, learning styles and interests for one evening to learn, socialize and be inspired. The evening will begin with a Community Havdalah and continue with two sessions (24 topics to choose from) and concludes with an Elegant Dessert Reception (*Dietary laws strictly observed)

Pre-Registration Price: $45 Tapestry; $40 JCC Member
Pre-Registration closes Thursday, January, 4, 2018 at noon.
Registration at the door will be $55 per person. All classes will be filled on a first-come basis. Last year sold out in advance.


Tapestry: A Community Celebration of Learning


7:35–8:25 p.m. SESSION #1

8:35–9:25 p.m. SESSION #2

1A. Cooking Like an Israeli • Debbie Kornberg (up to 20 people, $10 extra per person to pay for ingredients). This class will showcase some popular Israeli dishes that are quick, easy & healthy. Participants will explore the world of spices and learn about their health benefits. Utilizing The Spice Way pantry, participants will see first-hand how spices can transform a dish, elevating its flavor. Samples provided! Menu to include: a Fattoush Salad, Roasted Eggplant with Tahini & a Moroccan Dukkah Blend (a dry dip).

2A. Gratitude: Waking Up to Life Part 2 • Rabbi Baruch Shalom Ezagui. Join us as we embark on a journey to rediscover the sunshine in life and appreciate all we have. Changing our perspective can change the way we experience life on a daily basis. This session is dedicated to developing the attitude of gratitude. Focusing on positive psychology and the Jewish concept of thankfulness, this session may change the way you get out of bed in the morning.


1B. The Wonder Years? Jewish Values for Parenting Teens • Craig Parks. Shalom Bayit (peace in the home) can be a challenge with teens. Learn how the implementation of Jewish wisdom and values can sharpen your focus on creating a healthy relationship with your teen now and as s/he continues to mature. We will explore what is “normal” teen behavior as well as how to empower ourselves as parents, reviewing the latest research and sharing our challenges/successes.

2B. Super Jews – From the X-Men to the Fantastic Four: How Judaism, Jewish Values and Jewish Texts have Influenced the Comic Book Industry • Rabbi Joshua Dorsch. By looking at a handful of examples from the original comic books, and their more recent Hollywood interpretations, we will explore how many of the heroes and stories that we have come to love are rooted in traditional Jewish texts. Together we will examine the ways in which these narratives have played out throughout the decades and have been shaped by the American Jewish experience.

1C. Abraham Joshua Heschel and Radical Amazement • Rabbi Wayne Dosick. Rabbi Dr. Abraham Joshua Heschel,z”l was a modern mystic, who saw the world through eyes of wonder, awe, and radical amazement. He brought the World of Spirit into contemporary Jewish consciousness through his God-centered teaching, writings, political activism, and personal magnetism. We will hear stories about Dr. Heschel’s life, and journey into his legacy through source-texts, chant, and spiritual inspiration.

2C. Cooking Like an Israeli • Debbie Kornberg (up to 20 people, $10 extra per person to pay for ingredients). This class will showcase some popular Israeli dishes that are quick, easy & healthy. Participants will explore the world of spices and learn about their health benefits. Utilizing The Spice Way pantry, participants will see first-hand how spices can transform a dish elevating its flavor. Samples provided! Menu to include: a Fattoush Salad, Roasted Eggplant with Tahini & a Morrocan Dukkah Blend (a dry dip).

1D. Mindfulness and Magic: Jewish Mysticism and Saving the Universe One Day at a Time • Rabbi George Wielechowski. Though you don’t hear about it often, and might not believe it based on the Jewish practice you’re familiar with, our tradition has a deep history in mystical exploration and magic (yes, magic). Join us to learn how this ancient branch of Jewish wisdom looked at mindful practice, embodied awareness, positive psychology, and the practice of magic. You will also discover how your daily surfing outing, yoga class, hikes, and other rituals have a wider impact on the universe than you might have thought.

2D. Jewish Music and Jewish Values in Popular Music • Craig Parks. You might be surprised to hear how the deep influence of Jewish values and artists has shaped musical and popular culture from the 1930’s until today. Be prepared to tap your toes, sing along, and become inspired by the contributions of Am Yisrael!




1E. The New American Zionism • Rabbi Phil Graubart. New organizations, such as JStreet, The New Israel Fund, and others have popped up, each expressing dissatisfaction with Israel’s policies and directions. Meanwhile, heritage organizations such as AIPAC, ADL, and Federations struggle to maintain passion and coherence in the new reality. Will a new consensus emerge? What will it look like? In this session, we’ll discuss these issues, focusing on values and texts that may help guide a fresh approach to American Zionism.

2E. The New American Jewish Identity • Rabbi Phil Graubart. Jewish identity is changing drastically in North America. Affiliation rates are plunging, intermarriage rates are rising, and old time key institutions such as the Federations, and synagogue movements are struggling. Yet some new, innovative institutions are thriving, some new ideas are flourishing, and most Jews remain proud to be Jewish, even as they find different ways of expressing a more diffuse, hyphenated identity. In this session we’ll study Jewish sources in order to understand some of the basic building blocks of Jewish identity outside of Israel.

1F. Generation Z and Tomorrow’s Jewish Leaders • Rabbi David Singer. Today’s college students are more diverse than ever before, and Hillel is at the forefront of helping them to make an enduring commitment to Jewish life, learning and Israel. Gain insight into the state of Jewish life on campus from UC San Diego Hillel Executive Director Rabbi David Singer.



2F. Language is Power: Metaphors, Pronouns and Names in 21st Century Judaism • Rabbi Scott Meltzer. As gender roles and our understanding of gender has changed so much in a short window of time, language has been stretched and contorted in order to keep up. Join together for this funny, at times silly, but very serious conversation about how Jewish language -- ancient, medieval, modern and contemporary -- reflects systems of power and oppression, and at the same time has been used as a force for liberation.

1G. Reclaiming Personal Prayer • Rabbi Ron Shulman. Jewish prayer did not begin as recitation from a book. In the early centuries of Jewish experience, there was no fixed liturgy. Originally, prayer was extemporaneous, voiced because of a specific need or in response to a particular situation. Over time Jewish prayer became formal, scripted, and communal. Let’s briefly explore how Jewish prayer evolved, how we can honor this history and, most importantly, reclaim the promise of personal prayer for ourselves.

2G. Torah’s Perception of a Mensch • Rabbi Jonah Fradkin. To become a mensch is a singularly important process and goal in Jewish life. We have examples of menschlichkeit in the Torah and most of us continue to grapple with how to behave like a mensch in a variety of situations in our own lives. From Pirke Avot, “In a place where people do not act like people, strive to be a person.”


1H. Creation in the Bible: Hurricanes, Climate Change and the Return of Water as a Force of Chaos and Destruction • Rabbi Scott Meltzer. Today, our climate continues to change, and the frequency and ferocity of water storms continue to increase -- hurricanes, tsunami and flooding. We recognize that water is essential for life; our dependence on it is even greater than our dependence on food. How can we regain the biblical awareness of the incredible power of water? How can we develop a new ethos of water reflective of its power to destroy and to give life?

2H. Sephardic Philosophy and Its Impact in Today’s Jewish Thought • Rabbi Nisso Palti. A beloved teacher in Latin America and a newcomer to San Diego with Aish, Rabbi Palti will share his unique perspective on this compelling topic.





1I. The Inner Lives of Hebrew Letters • Kohenet Nancy Handwerger. Come to enjoy and experience the potency of the Hebrew Letters. The Hebrew Letters are art forms, called the building blocks of creation. They combine lines, curves and spaces to invite varied levels of meaning. Through discussion, art and meditation you will be invited to connect with a letter in a uniquely spiritual way.

2 I. Three Stories of the Brave, the Righteous, and the Audacious – Little Known Events from the Shoah • Lili Feingold. Join us for an hour of Shoah learning where we will explore three relatively unknown stories from a toddler in Terezin, to a small village of French rescuers, and the tale of two bold women. You will be moved and inspired as we honor courageous acts of seemingly ordinary people.

1J. YOGA: From Darkness to Light • Rabbi Alyson Solomon. Havdalah on the mat – Move, chant and make Havdalah, between Shabbat and the new week. Join us for some gentle, yet vigorous yoga. We will move from constraint to expansion, narrow to wide, closed to opening. Bring a mat, comfy clothes and your wild heart.




2J. Trans-Parent: A Jewish Understanding of Sexuality in the 21st Century • Rabbi Yael Ridberg. In the dizzying spin of the 21st century we have achieved marriage equality in all 50 states for LGBTQ people, there are openly gay and lesbian leaders in every field, and transgender rabbis, athletes, actors, government leaders, and everyday Americans are more able to live their lives as their truest selves. We will examine Jewish texts that deal with gender, sexuality, and inclusion as a way to situate the conversation within a Jewish context. All you need to bring is an open heart and mind.

1K. Our Garden of Eden: Jewish Environmentalism • Jennifer Meltzer. In this session we will look at the biblical story of the Garden of Eden to explore how Judaism understands notions of conservation and preservation of nature. Judaism has always been an “eco-friendly” religion which encourages respect and appreciation of nature and deplores abuse and wanton destruction of natural resources.



2K. Building Your Epic Spiritual Fitness Plan • Rachel Eden. Billions of dollars and an inordinate amount of time and energy are poured into well-being and fitness each year. Imagine if we treated our spiritual health with the same investment! Rachel will discuss how spiritual success is possible with the same structured and motivated approach that many use to gain a healthy body. Based on a 14 Part Epic Spiritual Fitness Plan Series, this class is the CliffsNotes version and is designed to accelerate your spiritual fitness and get you in top spiritual shape!

1L. Raul Hilberg’s Triad and Way Beyond • Rabbi Jonathan Stein. Raoul Hilberg is the author of the landmark work on the Holocaust, The Destruction of European Jewry. His scholarship in the 1960s was the critical factor in developing the idea of Holocaust Studies. In this session, we will examine and discuss Hilberg’s Shoah triad (Victims, Perpetrators, and Bystanders) along with some suggested refinements. The session will also include a hands-on examination and discussion of Holocaust memorabilia.


2L. Maimonides’ Hidden Torah Commentary • Rabbi Michael Samuel. For many centuries, Jews used to say “there arose no one like Moses.” Yet in the span of one lifetime in the 12th century, Moses Maimonides’ new vision recast and reinvented Judaism for a new age. Today, every denomination of Judaism is fond of claiming Maimonides as one of their champions. Who was this remarkable man who impacted Judaism so profoundly? And why did so many of his colleagues feel threatened by his teachings? What were his most important teachings that left a lasting impression for the ages?

Photos from our inaugural Tapestry (January 7, 2017)


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