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Week of October 23
Mirror on the Wall
Why What You See in Others is a Reflection of Yourself
Two people witness the same event, one finds flaw, while the other sees opportunity. Why do people see things differently? What do our interpretations reveal about who we are? And how can paying more attention to them help us become better people?
Week of October 30
For the Sake of Love
How to Nurture Unconditional Love
Do we love others for what we get from them, or do we love them for who they really are? On the other hand, are we even capable of loving without getting anything in return? This lesson shows the way toward an attainable balance.
Week of November 6
Livening The Human Core
How to Get Up when Life is Down
Material worries cause emotional drain, depleting us of our inner reserves and the conviction to go on. This class introduces profound advice from the prophet Elisha about how to reignite our inner spark.
Week of November 13
Behind the Wedding Ring
Steps to Acquiring a Flourishing Marriage
Marriage is forever. Husband and wife should both feel they are getting a winning deal. These are some of the secrets we explore as we unravel the surprising biblical origins of the wedding ring.
Week of November 20
Living to Laugh
Humor as our Reason for Being
What makes us laugh? What gives us our greatest giggles? Humor is born from the radically unexpected, unfamiliar, and abnormal. This lesson views laughter as the purpose of life, that by transcending and defying our nature we can make G‑d chuckle.
Week of November 27
Jacob’s Ladder
Actualizing Your Higher Calling
Climbing from who we are to our heavenly visage (what we can become) is perhaps life’s greatest challenge. This lesson introduces a practical daily meditative exercise to keep our potential in sight and the tools to actualize it.
Week of December 4
A Love Called Hatred
The Fascinating Story of King Menasheh
The opposite of love is not hatred, but indifference. Hatred is love turned sour. When people are too gripped by love to let go and be indifferent, they instead redefine their strong relationship as hate. This lesson examines the biography of a hateful Jewish king who ultimately uncovered the love behind his hatred.
Week of December 11
The Tune of Ambivalence
Navigating Through Tough Existential Dilemmas
Discover the guiding principles that help us make critical and courageous decisions. Torn between temptation, hesitation, and cognitive dissonance, this lesson examines three biblical tales of everyday struggle that share a common tune—literally!
Week of December 18
Decorate, Then Sweep
Starting Out on a Positive Note
You need to rid yourself of bad habits to inculcate positive ones, but if you don’t start with the good right away, you may end up waiting forever. This lesson explores the pros and cons of cognitive versus behavioral therapy and the wisdom in the order of the Chanukah candles and of Joseph’s sons.
Week of December 25
Reconstructing Crossed Lines
An Exploration of the Workings of Teshuvah
When we cross a line, we become desensitized to the line and prone to cross it again. How do we return to our former selves? This lesson explores the innovative, three-step process Joseph used to aid his brothers return, including reconstructing their original circumstances to prove they had truly changed.
Week of January 1
Deaf to Negotiation
The Positive Side to Selective Hearing
Subtleties sometimes dilutes and distorts the lines of truth, and complexity gets in the way of us standing up for what is right. This lesson amplifies the story of Chushim—the deaf grandson of Jacob—who stood by the obvious when others were blinded by the details.
Week of January 9
An Attitude of Gratitude
Integrating all areas of Judaism and our lives
When it comes to gratitude, it is more important that we are grateful than that the recipient is deserving of our gratitude. Discover how Judaism extends the obligation of gratitude even to objects and enemies.
Week of January 16
Through Thick and Thin
Jewish perspectives on gratitude
Jewish culture is multifaceted; we dance and mourn, fast and feast, in solemn prayer and in jubilant celebration. What’s the underlying theme that ties together all this diversity?
Week of January 23
The Steps of Man
How G‑d Guides our Every Move
The seemingly unexplained, random occurrences in life in fact have a unique purpose. This lesson explores the guiding force behind our wants, needs, desires, as well as the happenstance that seems to come out of nowhere.
Week of January 30
Means to an End
Discovering the Meaning in the Mundane
Why do you do what you do? Are you clear on your priorities? Does your life revolve around them? This lesson explores the importance of the means in achieving the end goal.
Week of February 6
Theism vs. Deism
Does G‑d Really Care?
How do you relate to G‑d? Does He dwell in the abstract or does He take interest in your personal affairs? This class explores our relationship with G‑d, and G‑d’s relationship with us.
Week of February 13
What Makes Us Jewish?
The Significance of the Conversion Process
Nowadays the conversion process is incomplete. Does this mean converts are less Jewish? Or does this say something about what it means to be a Jew today?
Week of February 20
Jewish Idol
Giving In to the Urge for Idolatry
Idolatry stems from the urge for a tangible, sensory spiritual experience. In biblical times, the cherubs in the temple filled this need. How do we achieve this nowadays?
Week of February 27
The Art of Attraction
Understanding Esther’s Beauty
What makes us attractive to others? Are people attracted to those who are proactive and “with it” or to those who bring out the beauty in others?
Week of March 5
Why We Sleep
An Exploration of Life’s Nightly Reset Button
We spend one third of our lives sleeping, but to what end? This lesson discusses how to break with the past and set off on brand new beginnings with each new day.
Week of March 12
Making a Difference
Understanding the Impact of Our Actions
We follow routines sometimes failing to see how our efforts are effective in bettering society. This lesson introduces how-according to Judaism- the world hangs in the balance, dependent upon our every deed.
Week of March 19
The Freedom Ride
Unshackling the Prisoner Within
This lesson explores the secret behind the cups of wine at the Passover seder, uncovering four steps toward spiritual awakening and personal freedom.
Week of March 26
A Stranger to Passover
How to Connect with the Experience
Not unlike fine wine and whiskey, a taste for G‑d needs to be developed. Passover is a time of personal connection, a time to become a real connoisseur of spirituality. This lesson explains how.
Week of April 16
To Carry Another's Load
A Primer on Empathetic Leadership
What makes a leader? Vision? Drive? Powerful communication skills? In Judaism, a leader must have more than personal ability. This lesson examines the human capacity to share in another’s pain.
Week of April 23
Me? A Noble Prince?
How Thinking Holy Affects Being Holy
Jewish culture is multifaceted: We dance and mourn, fast and feast, in solemn prayer and in jubilant celebration. What is the underlying theme that ties together all this diversity?
Week of April 30
First Things First
Finding Time for the Important
If money were not a concern, how would you spend your time? This lesson discusses the importance of locking in quality time and making the most of the moments we share with the people and ideals we love most.
Week of May 7
Footprints In The Sand
Maintaining Relationships Through Thick and Thin
The colloquial expression, “I will always be there for you,” takes on new meaning in this fascinating class on true love and the Omnipresent’s enduring relationship with us, His children.
Week of May 14
The Sound Of Silence
Shedding Bias for Personal Growth
How do you unite with another human being, to become “like one person with one heart?” This lesson suggests going for a hard reset by putting yourself aside and focusing on others to reveal the common bond.
Week of May 21
Fruit and Fruition
An Insight on Result-Oriented Thinking
Good intentions may not pave the path to hell, but absent deed, they certainly will not lead to heaven. This lesson discusses the importance of deed and the symbolism of Shavuot as the New Year for fruit.
Week of May 28
Feeler or Follower?
Cultivating a Human Relationship with G‑d
Is religion about conforming, or about discovering your own inner connection? This lesson unravels a puzzling discussion between Moses and G‑d about the heart of our relationship with the divine.
Week of June 4
Of High Walls And Mighty Wills
A Timely Teaching in the Art of Courage
Many of us harbor unfulfilled dreams—visions of how we would be if only we had the strength to live up to our potential. This class offers a fresh take on the account of the spies in Jericho, one that tells of allure and self-mastery.
Week of June 11
Sparkling Deeds
Infusing Feeling into Everyday Actions
Doing is most important, but emotions are the wings that make you soar. This class examines a biblical story of reincarnation, and of repeat mistakes, in order to teach us this vital lesson.
Week of June 18
To Live and Die For
Living up to Our Most Essential Values
What does it mean to truly live? What would you be prepared to lay down your life for? This lesson views living as a dedication to ideals greater than yourself, and shows how we are all capable of living up to such lofty ideals.
Week of June 25
When You Dream A Dream
The Power of Imagination and Thought
In an endeavor to understand Judaism’s fascination with dreams, we explore the human capacity for prophecy and examine scenarios in which a single thought can make a world of difference.
Week of July 2
Surfing Life’s Waves
Lessons from the Moon Prayer
Life is never a level ride. We encounter inspirations and platitudes, feelings of connection and of emptiness. Learn to dance to the rhythm of life, and how to get up when you’re down, and discover a destination worth waiting for.
Week of July 9
Resolutions, Resolutions
How to Make Them, and Make Them Work
We undertake life changes—to diet, to exercise, or to wake up earlier. But how long do they typically last? What is the secret behind an effective resolution? Examine the Torah paradigm for verbal commitments and uncover a wealth of practical insights into the art of resolution-making.
Week of July 16
Making Dreams Come True
How Actions Influence G‑d's Decisions
Some hopes are so far removed from reality that it seems ridiculous to even entertain them, let alone act upon them as if they were real. This lesson teaches the power of translating our hope into action, and how that directly affects their realization.
Week of July 23
Retracting Your Magnum Opus
The Courage to Sacrifice for the Truth
What kind of character does it take to reject your entire life's work all because of one minute flaw? Wouldn't you be tempted to let it slip by unnoticed? This is a story about the strength to risk all for the sake of standing by the truth.
Week of July 30
Bribing G‑d
The One Thing Money Cannot Buy
Whether by guilt or by some inner drive to be good, we are often tempted to overcompensate for our wrongdoings by being extra kind, being overly charitable, or by performing a particularly saintly deed. Is G‑d ever swayed by such behavior?
Week of August 6
Fowl Play
Lessons from the Signs of a Kosher Bird
Hawkish, cocky, dovish—Judaism recognizes that we are what we eat. What makes a bird kosher? Which bird traits should we aspire to emulate? Which should we stay far away from? This lesson discussed the signs of a kosher bird, and why we should avoid imitating the vulture's critical eye.
Week of August 13
Are Kings Good Things?
Exploring the Underpinnings of a Jewish Monarchy
Is the Jewish notion of a king a mere relic from our ancient past? How is the mitzvah to appoint a king meaningful in our times? In this lesson, you'll discover a Jewish leadership model that's as relevant today as ever!
Week of August 20
Are You Big Enough to Care?
On the True Meaning of Greatness
What makes a man great? Is it his superior character and distinguished abilities that separates him from the rest? Or is it something else altogether? Discover a Jewish definition of greatness—one that defies convention.
Week of August 27
Between One Jew and Another
The Joy of Shared Jewish Experience
What unites Jews as one people? Why are we all responsible to care for each other? This lesson explores the profound interconnectedness that binds all Jews together, and its practical implications for Jewish life.
Week of September 3
Children, Health, and Wealth
Why Bother G‑d with Our Personal Requests?
Why do we pray? To connect with G‑d, or to ask for our needs? This lesson offers a revolutionary approach to the function of prayer, and explains why we concern G‑d with even our mundane requests.
Week of September 10
More Than Perfect
When Effort Trumps Perfection
What's more important: arriving at the finish line, or endeavoring to get there? This lesson offers powerful insights into why Judaism prefers the struggles of the less-than-perfect over the flawless score of the naturally talented.
Week of September 16
The Four Kinds and Their Lessons for Life
What lies in the way of materializing our dreams and ambitions? How do we overcome these obstacles? In this session, we examine the symbolism of the lulav and etrog, providing a powerful insight into how to succeed at life.

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Torah Studies is a program of the Rohr Jewish Learning Institute