At Emanu-El, we are an active community of lifelong Jewish learners — in the endless pursuit of spiritual growth and exploration. As Jews, we are compelled to question and debate. These conversations energize us as we gain new perspectives and challenge our own long-held beliefs. Our shared desire for knowledge and for community enriches us as individuals and bonds us as a congregation. Emanu-El thrives when we are learning together. We hope you will find time on your calendar and in your mind to join us on a thought-provoking and powerful Jewish journey.
To inquire about adult education, please contact Ariana Estoque, Director of Member Experience, at (415) 750-7552 or [email protected].
Scroll down to view our current Adult Education offerings:
Emanu-El Reads – Summer Book Options for our Charles Michael Scholar-in-Residence, Dara Horn
Leading up to our October scholar, join us in reading two of her most outstanding books. We will come together for in-person discussion during summer.
Tuesday, June 26, from 7:00 – 8:30pm on Zoom, led by Rabbi Jonathan Singer
A Guide For the Perplexed: A novel – Software prodigy Josie Ashkenazi has invented an application that records everything its users do. When she visits the Library of Alexandria as a tech consultant, she is abducted in Egypt’s postrevolutionary chaos with only a copy of the philosopher Maimonides’ famous work to anchor her—leaving her jealous sister Judith free to take over her life. A century earlier, Cambridge professor Solomon Schechter arrives in Egypt, hunting for a medieval archive hidden in a Cairo synagogue. Their stories intertwine in this spellbinding novel of how technology changes memory and how memory shapes the soul.
Tuesday, July 28, from 7:00 – 8:30pm, at Congregation in the Rinder Chapel, led by Alexa Asher.
People Love Dead Jews- Often asked by major publications to write on subjects related to Jewish culture―and increasingly in response to a recent wave of deadly antisemitic attacks―Horn was troubled to realize what all of these assignments had in common: she was being asked to write about dead Jews, never about living ones. In these essays, Horn reflects on subjects as far-flung as the international veneration of Anne Frank, the mythology that Jewish family names were changed at Ellis Island, the blockbuster traveling exhibition Auschwitz, the marketing of the Jewish history of Harbin, China, and the little-known life of the “righteous Gentile” Varian Fry. Throughout, she challenges us to confront the reasons why there might be so much fascination with Jewish deaths, and so little respect for Jewish lives unfolding in the present.
Our very own Engagement Program Manager, Alexa Asher, will lead the discussion. Alexa holds a Master’s in Holocaust Studies from University of Haifa. She just returned to the Bay Area after living the last five years in Israel. She is passionate about combatting Holocaust denial and antisemitism. Alexa will use her background to inspire Jewish pride during challenging times.
Dara Horn is the award-winning author of six books, including the novels In the Image (Norton 2002), The World to Come (Norton 2006), All Other Nights (Norton 2009), A Guide for the Perplexed (Norton 2013), and Eternal Life (Norton 2018), and the essay collection People Love Dead Jews: Reports from a Haunted Present (Norton 2021). One of Granta magazine’s Best Young American Novelists (2007), she is the recipient of two National Jewish Book Awards, the Edward Lewis Wallant Award, the Harold U. Ribalow Award, and the Reform Judaism Fiction Prize, and she was a finalist for the Wingate Prize, the Simpson Family Literary Prize, and the Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction. Her books have been selected as New York Times Notable Books, Booklist’s 25 Best Books of the Decade, and San Francisco Chronicle’s Best Books of the Year, and have been translated into eleven languages. Her nonfiction work has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, Smithsonian Magazine, and The Jewish Review of Books, among many other publications, and she is a regular columnist for Tablet Magazine. Horn received her doctorate in comparative literature from Harvard University, studying Yiddish and Hebrew. She has taught courses in these subjects at Sarah Lawrence College and Yeshiva University, and held the Gerald Weinstock Visiting Professorship in Jewish Studies at Harvard. She has lectured for audiences in hundreds of venues throughout North America, Israel, and Australia. She lives in New Jersey with her husband and four children.
Introduction to Judaism
When: Tuesday Evenings, 7:00 – 9:00 pm
Where: Via Zoom for our Fall trimester
Cost: Emanu-El Member $54; Non-Member: $75
Spring Trimester – April 5, 12, 26; May 3, 10, 17, 24 (course will be virtual this trimester but will end with an in-person Shabbat dinner on Friday, May 13th)
Join Emanu-El clergy to learn about the breadth and wonder of Jewish tradition. This class is a pathway for the adult learner who wishes to discover or deepen Jewish knowledge, non-Jews who are marrying a Jewish partner, and those who are considering conversion to Judaism. Participants register for each trimester separately.
*Shabbat Dinner experience at the Temple.
Shabbat Morning Torah Hevra with Emanu-El Scholar Rabbi Lawrence Kushner
“The Spiritual Teachings of the Sefat Emet”
When: Saturday mornings beginning September 4, 2021 to May 2022, 10:00 – 11:00 am
No class on the following Saturdays: March 12; April 16 (first day of Passover); June 4
Where: Via Zoom
Cost: No fee
Background: Only a very, very modest familiarity with Hebrew but a serious interest in learning more will be needed.
Text that will be used in class: The Language of Truth, trans. & ed. Arthur Green (Jewish Publication Society). Available in paperback on Amazon. The Sefat Emet is the pinnacle of Hasidic spirituality.
To register, please contact [email protected] to have your name & email address added to the Zoom invitation list.
Weekly Torah Study with Emanu-El Clergy
When: Every Saturday, 9:15 – 10:00 am
Where: Via Zoom
Each week, a member of our clergy leads a group in Torah Study followed by Mourner’s Kaddish and Healing Prayer.
6:00 pm - 7:00 pm | Join us for In-Person Friday Night Shabbat Services this…
9:15 am - 10:15 am | Torah Study with a member of our Clergy, followed…
10:00 am - 11:00 am | A Zoom seminar - " The Spiritual Teachings of…