The public is invited to learn what may seem like (and is) an obscure Jewish teaching - called Mussar - but requires no knowledge of Judaism, only a desire to strengthen one's soul.
Alan Morinis is the director and founder of the Mussar Institute, dedicated to the idea of "improving or remedying the traits of the soul, to bring the soul to wholeness and holiness." He explains this in a free program over a three-day span (May 1st - 3rd) as the Sheldon Kutnick Scholar-in-Residence at Congregation Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek in Chester.
Specifically, Morinis will address 18 soul traits: humility, patience, gratitude, compassion, order, equanimity, honor, simplicity, enthusiasm, silence, generosity, truth, moderation, loving kindness, responsibility, trust, faith and yirah (a combination of fear and awe, without a true English counterpart).
There is no need to sign up and you may come for a part or for all of the weekend events. Schedule is as follows:
Friday, May 1st - 6:00 pm - Dairy/Vegetarian Shabbat potluck dinner, followed by 7:00 pm Shabbat evening service with an introductory sermon by Morinis, "What is Mussar and Why Should I Care?"
Saturday, May 2nd - 10:00 am - Shabbat morning service with sermon by Morinis, "Torah Through a Mussar Lens." Followed by a dairy potluck luncheon and then a 1:00 pm text study, entitled "Why You Are, How You Are and What's Your Potential?"
Sunday, May 3rd - 11:00 am - Experiential Workshop for parents and interested adults.
Congregation Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek is located at 55 East Kings Highway in Chester. For more information, visit www.cbsrz.org or call 860-526-8920.