The first course of the 2008-2009 Semester will delve into the first chapter of Tractate Pesachim (folios 2a-5a). It will provide a profound study of the Mitzvot connected the holiday that celebrates our birth as a nation. This section represents the Talmud's wonderful blend of Jewish legal analysis, the practice of Mitzvot and Jewish values.
The Mitzvot associated with preparing for the holiday of Passover are classic examples where the Biblical commandments are closely interwoven with later Rabbinic enactments. As you study, you will learn to analyze the sages' thought processes as they sought to strengthen Torah observance. Lessons will focus on practical Halacha as you follow the Mitzvah from its Biblical roots to the Talmudic dialogue, to the verdicts of the codifiers.
Along the way, The Talmud's text meanders to touch on topics as varied as safe traveling, speaking with refinement, trusting strangers and performing Mitzvot with alacrity, among other subjects.
As you experience the Talmud's full depth, you will not only observe a 2000 year old intellectual debate, but will have the opportunity to add your own voice and apply your logic to the discussion. Regardless of your previous experience studying Talmud, classes are structured to make you feel at home with the topic.