Event Spotlight

Photo © Abraham Menashe

Explore end-of-life choices and the psycho-spiritual obstacles to a ‘beautiful death’

Join us for a life-affirming, thought-provoking and transformative retreat: January 18-23, 2015 ...
Rabbi Diane Elliot ESEB

“Embodying Prayer,” the first of four residential retreats, this November

New cohort begins November 3-9, 2014 in northern California.
The Rainbow Library, 2011 © Peter Puklus

Distance Learning Fall Classes

Want to build or improve your Hebrew skills? Dig deeply into Jewish ...

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A prayer for rain by Rabbi Laura Duhan Kaplan

Shmini Atzeret, the eighth day of the festival of Sukkot, marks the beginning of winter on the Jewish calendar. At this time of year, we pray for  a compassionate allocation of water. Not too much, not too little. Traditional  piyyutim (liturgical poems) recall the role of water in the lives of our male  ancestors. This […]

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Hoshanot by Reb Zalman z”l

Hoshanna Rabbah, “The Great ‘Save Us!’,” falls on the seventh day of Sukkot. It’s traditional to recite hoshanot, supplicatory prayers, on that day. Reb Zalman has written a set of contemporary poetic hoshanot in Hebrew and in English. Of his hoshanot, Reb Arthur (Rabbi Arthur Waskow) notes that: These Hoshanot in English by Reb Zalman […]

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Seder Ushpizata by Rabbi David Seidenberg

The following liturgy for inviting the mothers and the fathers to the sukkah is given in Hebrew and Aramaic in neohasid’s 2-page pdf, revised for 2014. Pictures of the liturgy are found below, followed by the entire English text. For an explanation of the order and description of the mothers given in this liturgy, visit […]

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A meditative practice with the Arba Minim (Four Species) by Rabbi Yoel Glick

Take the lulav (palm branch) in your right hand, with the hadasim (myrtle) on the right facing you and the aravot (willows) on your left. Then take the etrog (citron) in your left hand and place it in front of the lulav. Now hold this whole bundle together while standing facing the East. Before you […]

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Four eclipses; four worlds; four holidays; four holy perspective shifts

A Jewish Renewal perspective on the tetrad of lunar eclipses. We in North America are about to experience the second of four total lunar eclipses in a row which, incredibly, coincide with Pesach (15 April in 2014, 4 April in 2015) and Sukkot (8 October in 2014 and 28 September in 2015). The full moon marking these festival times […]

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R Shafir lobb

Welcoming Two New Affiliated Jewish Renewal Communities

ALEPH Alliance for Jewish Renewal is proud to announce the affiliation of two new communities — one in California and one in Florida. The Eitz Chayim Community in Port Saint Lucie, Florida served by Rabbi Shafir Lobb, had its roots in the Palm Tree “Kallah” in 2014 and is established to foster Jewish Renewal activities […]

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The Gate of Tears by Rabbi Shefa Gold

A meditation for Ne’ila, the closing service of Yom Kippur. Yom Kippur leads to the urgency of this moment. At Ne’ila we rouse each other from our complacency by saying, “Open the gates in the hour of the closing of the gates. The day is passing away. This is our chance. Now.” We read in […]

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Kavanah for Yizkor by Reb Simcha Raphael

A meditation to be offered, aloud or silently, before Yizkor (memorial) prayers. Jewish tradition, in its wisdom, teaches us that between the world of the living and the world of the dead there is a window and not a wall.  Unfortunately, in our culture of scientific materialism, we often believe that dead is dead, and after death, the channels of communication […]

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Unetaneh Tokef: Days of Judgment by Rabbi Laura Duhan Kaplan

During Rosh Hashanah Musaf, we immerse ourselves in a stunning Rosh Hashanah prayer-poem, Unetaneh Tokef. Unetaneh tokef kedushat hayom Let us make a big deal out of the holiness of this day Ki hu norah v’ayom Because it is awesome and terrifying U’v’shofar gadol yitakah A great shofar blast is sounded V’kol dmamah dakah yishamah […]

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May the One Who Answered… by Rabbi Arthur Waskow

This is a gender-inclusive variation on the classical piyyut “Hu Yaanenu,” “The One Who Answered Us.” Hu Yaanenu /Hi Taanenu: An Inclusive Version You Who answered Sara in the palace — May You answer us; You Who answered Avraham at knife-point — May You answer us; You Who answered Rivka in her outcry — May […]

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