Emanu-El Scholar Courses

Madeleine Haas Russell Institute of Jewish Learning




A Mystical Torah: Readings from Classical Kabbalistic & Hasidic Sources on the Weekly Portion

With Rabbi Kushner
Saturdays, 9:15 – 10:15 am, Starting September 13
Room 53 


The Jewish Publication Society has just released London Rabbi, Larry Tabak's anthology of kabbalistic and hasidic insights into the weekly parasha. These short texts, available in both Hebrew and English, are accompanied by notes and commentary.

Each Shabbat morning the class shall read some or all of the selections in the original and use them as lenses through which to refract the Torah and our own spiritual search.
No registration necessary.

Text: The Aura of Torah: A Kabbalistic-Hasidic Commentary to the Weekly Readings, Larry Tabick, Jewish Publication Society, 2014.

Kabbalah: Jewish Mystical Imagination 

With Rabbi Kushner
Noon – 1:00 pm, March 19; April 2, 16, 30; May 14
Location: Conference Room, Mechanic’s Institute, 57 Post Street, San Francisco, CA 94104

What is Kabbalah? Is it relevant to my Judaism? Why is it dangerous? How is Jewish mysticism unique? Am I a Kabbalist?  


1. The Way into Jewish Mystical Tradition, Lawrence Kushner, Jewish Lights Publishing, 2001.

2. Kabbalah: A Very Short Introduction, Joseph Dan, Oxford University Press, 2006.

Emanu-El Member Cost: $18, Cost: $25




Special Lecture

With Rabbi Kushner
Friday, February 6, 7:00 pm, Congregation Emanu-El

Join us as Rabbi Kushner shares the life of the spirit of the 21st century.


Mystical Shabbat Retreat

Friday, March 13 - Sunday, March 15, Marconi Retreat Center

Sign up now for the Mystical Shabbat Retreat with Rabbi Lawrence Kushner and additional Emanu-El clergy.

Enjoy Shabbat observance in beautiful Point Reyes/Tomales Bay while exploring the mystical side of Judaism with Rabbi Lawrence Kushner and other Emanu-El clergy.

Double occupancy rooming ONLY

$236 per person includes materials, food and lodging. Space is limited to 35 adults.

If you have questions,  contact Ariana Estoque at (415) 751-2541 x307 or aestoque@emanuelsf.org


Kabbalah: A Love Story

Rabbi Kushner's first novel

Four years in the making! Soon to be a major motion picture! (Hey, it could happen.) After sixteen books of non-fiction, Rabbi Kushner's first novel, KABBALAH: A LOVE STORY is the fable of a rabbi who accidentally discovers a hidden, lost page to the Zohar (the master text of Kabbalah) and what that discovery does to his life and the life of a woman he doesn't (yet) know he loves who teaches astronomy at Columbia University. A short selection from the first chapter and endorsements are available here.


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