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Peninsula Learning Network: The Jewish Theory and Practice of Sacred Dialogue - DATE TBD

Facilitator: Rabbi Amy Eilberg 6 weekday mornings on the Peninsula, beginning week of October 30 $500/participant – includes participation in February Day of Learning 

In our highly contentious times, polarized conflict can emerge in the classroom and in many of our relationships and communities.  Many people believe that there are only two options when political issues arise: aggressive and destructive debate, on the one hand, or avoidanceof all potential controversial issues, on the other.  Jewish tradition contains rich resources guiding us through a middle way.  

This course will allow Jewish educators to take a rigorous look at Jewish wisdom on the conduct of strong disagreement – that deepens relationship, strengthens community, and leads us all to greater understanding. The study of classical texts will be accompanied by interactive exercises, focused on real-life, school-based experiences, to strengthen educators’ skills for building a robust and respectful climate of engaged dialogue in the classroom.

This series, then, will:
•   engage educators in rigorous study of classical texts on “machloket l’shem shamayim”/“argument for the sake of heaven;
•   offer interactive exercises that will strengthen educators’ skills in navigating and facilitating conflict situations;
•   explore real-life situations of political conflict in the classroom.

During the 2017-18 school year, Jewish LearningWorks offers educational leaders and classroom teachers a series of opportunities to explore how to provide relevant, compelling Jewish Education in Times of Division.  Many senior educators are wrestling daily with when to lean in to a difficult conversation, how to refrain from deepening a divide and how best to move their schools and moral communities toward just action.

We hope you will consider participating in one of our two learning networks this fall – one on the Peninsula, one in the East Bay – designed to provide collegial support, robust learning and new skills.  We anticipate bringing both networks together in February for a shared day of learning.

Each network will include six, three-hour sessions between November and January.  Meeting dates and times will be chosen according to the preference of registered participants.  The fee for participation is $500.  For more information, or to register, please email Dana Sheanin –

Rabbi Amy Eilberg is the first woman ordained as a Conservative rabbi by the Jewish Theological Seminary of America.  She serves as the director of the Pardes Rodef Shalom (Pursuer of Peace) Communities Program, helping synagogues and Jewish organizations place the pursuit of peace in interpersonal relationships at the center of their communal mission. Rabbi Eilberg also serves as a spiritual director and interfaith activist in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her book, From Enemy to Friend: Jewish Wisdom and the Pursuit of Peace, was published by Orbis Books in March 2014. She received her Doctor of Ministry degree from United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities in 2016.  Previously, Rabbi Eilberg was a co-founder of the Bay Area Jewish Healing Center, where she directed the Center’s Jewish Hospice Care Program, and served as Founding Co-Director of the Yedidya Center for Jewish Spiritual Direction. Nationally known as a leader of the Jewish healing movement, she lectures and writes on issues of Jewish healing, spiritual direction, and peace building.