Introduction to Judaism

Discover what could be meaningful to you in liberal Judaism. Explore a modern take on Jewish life. Engage with Jewish values, celebrations, spirituality, and community in an Introduction to Judaism class.

Our next class will begin Monday, October 12, from 7:30-9:00pm.
This 21-session class, taught by Cantor Amelia Lavranchuk, welcomes all who are interested in learning more about Jewish tradition and wisdom. In 21 sessions, it will provide the basis for further learning or a Jewish life. The entire class will be held remotely, via Zoom. Sessions will take place from 7:30-9:00pm on Mondays: Oct: 12, 19, 26; Nov: 2, 9, 16, 23, 30; Dec: 7, 14, 21; Jan: 4, 11, 25; Feb: 1, 8, 22; Mar: 1, 8, 15, 22. The class is free for EET members, and $360 per person ($720 per couple) for non-members. 
For member registration, click here.
For non-member registration, click here.

Everyone is welcome. The class is perfect for interfaith couples, those raising Jewish children, spiritual seekers, individuals considering conversion, and Jews who want a meaningful adult Jewish learning experience. Ask your questions, engage with multiple perspectives, and explore Jewish life through a Reform lens.

Business Ethics Lunch and Learn (BELL)

Join us for a lunch time conversation with Rabbi Josh about ethical dilemmas in business and life and the ways in which Jewish tradition and ethics guide our choices. Tuesdays Oct. 13, Nov. 10, Dec. 8, Jan. 12, Feb. 9, March 9, April 13, and May 11, from 12:00-1:00pm. All sessions this year will take place via Zoom.

Tuesday Night Learning

Join Rabbi Josh Stanton for lively and discussion-based Adult Education opportunities. These will take place throughout the year on Tuesday evenings from 8:00-9:00pm. Whether this is your first chance to learn Jewishly, or you grew up going to yeshiva, there will be something here for you. For more information, keep reading below or e-mail Rabbi Josh Stanton directly.

Science, Truth and Judaism in the Age of Covid-19
East End Temple & Scientists in Synagogues 

In 1987, Rabbi Irving Greenberg predicted that the Jewish People would reach a “Third Era,” driven by lay leaders and facilitated by clergy. He was more than thirty years ahead of his time, but seismic shifts within Jewish communal life are likely to prove him right in the coming year. Covid-19 has accelerated existing trends towards lay leadership and empowerment, tapping their stores of knowledge, wisdom, and understanding.  

Our collaboration with Sinai & Synapses, through its Scientists in Synagogues program, will harness the wisdom of East End Temple lay leaders – and engage our entire community in the process of reflecting on truth, science, and the place of Jewish thought in guiding our choices amid a time of uncertainty. It is evident that scientists within the Jewish community have long navigated questions of belief and doubt, the search for truth and Truth, and troubling questions about human nature.  

This unique year of study will both captivate minds and help our community continue fulfilling its potential as a lay-driven institution. It will focus on a series of five Adult Education mini-mesters, each with three 60-minute class sessions for laypeople in East End Temple, as well as the wider community. For the time-being, these will take place via Zoom in the evenings from 8:00-9:00pm. In the future, we hope to gather in-person.  

Year of Study 

Rosh Hashanah Preamble: Saturday, Sept. 19 at 1:30pm
Rabbi Joshua Stanton will facilitate a careful study of “The Third Era of Jewish History” by Rabbi Dr. Irving Greenberg on the afternoon of Rosh Hashanah. 

Class 1 — Communication and Miscommunication: Tuesdays Oct. 13, 20, and 27 at 8:00pm

Social media is changing the way we understand ourselves, human nature, and the world around us. Join us, as we explore the ways in which people get information (and misinformation) today – and the rabbinic norms about how we should communicate.   

Class 2 — Plague and Peoplehood: Tuesdays Dec. 1, 8, and 15 at 8:00pm

From the Exodus to the Bubonic Plague to Covid-19, plagues have defined Jewish life and community, as well as the ways in which other communities view us. We will reflect on these unique (and moving) histories in order to gain insight into our present pandemic.  

Class 3 — Jewish Approaches to Medicine: Tuesdays March 9, 16, and 23 at 8:00pm

From Maimonides to Jonas Salk, Jewish physicians have redefined excellence in care and pioneered new approaches to painful ailments. How does Jewish tradition approach medicine (and vice versa)?  

Class 4 — What Makes Us Human? Tuesdays April 6, 13, and 20 at 8:00pm

Rabbinic tradition defines human beings as “the creature that speaks.” When does our humanity begin, when does it end, and what does it mean?  

Class 5 — Big Data and Artificial Intelligence: Tuesdays May 4, 11, and 18 at 8:00pm

At one point do machines deserve rights? At what point do they surpass human capacity? At what point should we be worried? Jewish tradition speaks extensively about the positive potential of science and human ability to create. How does it reflect on the dangers and drawbacks of human creations?