Chabad at Short Hills - Center for Jewish Life
Location 650 S Orange Ave, Livingston, NJ 07039 USA
Phone973-535-1800
Upcoming Course: Judaism's Gifts to the World

By most indications, modern society is a model of moral progress. Yet when it comes to everyday values, we still grapple with the big ones…

   - What are our responsibilities toward the less fortunate?
   - How do we fashion a more moral and equal society?
   - How can we make a move toward more cohesive family living?

Join us to unpack six of the world’s most cherished values and how they were delivered to humankind by the Torah. By tracing their fascinating journey to the mainstream, we’ll discover a timeless core of purpose, integrity, and clarity in each value—a powerful gift of guidance as we navigate our own daily choices.

Course Details
Lesson 1 The Gift of Social Responsibility

To the ancients, poverty and suffering were unfortunate facts of life for the unlucky to bear alone. It was the Torah that introduced the radical concept of social responsibility. So, what’s the true nature of that responsibility? Whose is it? And how should I relate to those receiving my help?

Lesson 2 The Gift of A Guiding Purpose

Abraham, the first Jew, discovered something that shook the foundations of the pagan society around him: there was one—only one—G-d, Creator of Heaven and earth. Monotheism drastically changed the way humanity has viewed life, purpose, and progress ever since. Discover how.

Lesson 3 The Gift of Respect for Life

It might seem axiomatic that human life is valuable, but a hard look at history reveals that the concept was once considered utterly radical. To discover how respect for life became a universal value, we’ll explore the underlying questions: What makes us human? And what are we here to do?

Lesson 4 The Gift of Equality and Individuality

Mastery over others was long deemed a birthright: some were born to rule; others to be ruled. Today, civil people agree that no one is intrinsically inferior or superior. This shift is thanks to the Torah’s revelation that we are all equally created in G-d’s image: just as G-d cannot be redundant, no human can be.

Lesson 5 The Gift of Work/Life Balance

Originally, those who labored did so endlessly. The Torah introduced us to Shabbat, mandating that Jewish people pause from work for a full day each week to focus on life’s purpose, on worship, and on family. As the modern world begins to recognize the benefits of Shabbat, our call to set aside that time of focus is more critical than ever.

Lesson 6 The Gift of Escaping the Cycle

Early societies considered human history locked in an endless cycle of war, conquest, peace, and more war. The Torah insists otherwise: we can, must, and will change the world for the better; war will eventually cease; justice and kindness will ultimately prevail. Today’s world is more eager than ever to hear this empowering message. Our closing lesson will suggest ways we can share it.

Dates & Times
    • 6 Wednesdays, Jan 29th - Mar 4th 2020 7:45 PM - 9:15 PM
    • $180.00
    • register
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Past Courses

Worrier to Warrior

November 2019
Worrier to Warrior

We yearn to feel happy, self-assured, and enthusiastic, yet we’re consumed by feelings of doubt, regret, insecurity, and suffering. Do our delicate positive emotions have a fighting chance at being in control? This course explores negative emotions in a completely new light, offering spiritual mechanisms that allow us to remain upbeat no matter what life brings.

With All My Heart

May 2019
With All My Heart

Whether you’re seeking relief from stress; you’re hoping for focus, clarity, and connection to a raw and vulnerable place deep within you; or you just want to start each day from a positive, humble, and grateful frame of mind, this course is for you.

Jewish wisdom teaches profound techniques to give wings to our emotions and words to our yearnings, allowing us to make contact and communicate with something larger than ourselves and feel comfort and shelter within a reality that’s more whole, more intense, more real, and more beautiful.
 

Crime and Consequence

February 2019
Crime and Consequence

When innocent people are wrongly convicted...
When "correctional facilities" turn first-time offenders into hardened criminals...
When known murderers walk free on a technicality …
Fairness in justice simply cannot be left to chance.

In Crime and Consequence, we explore 3000 years of Jewish wisdom concerning criminal convictions, sentencing, crime prevention, and rehabilitation. We challenge our thinking, pondering the application of Talmudic principles to real and complex, modern-day cases, and we get to the heart of questions such as:

Should we consider testimonies given in exchange for a reduced sentence as reliable evidence?
What is the goal of punishing criminals? is it to gain retribution for the victim, keep criminals off the streets and safeguard from future crime, set an example and instill the fear of law, or to rehabilitate the criminal and reintroduce him to society?
Is life-without-parole a justifiable penalty? Is it within our right to sentence a man to death? When would these be warranted? Is there a better way?

Wrestling with Faith

October 2018
Wrestling with Faith

Most people, even the devout, struggle with beliefs about G-d. It is easy, for example, to affirm the basic tenets of Judaism during a prayer service, but when it comes to trusting G-d with our daily decisions, many share a secret, painful fear that G-d isn’t really looking out for them. Many of us have been brought up under the assumption that mainstream science is incompatible with our Jewish faith. So when we see compelling evidence for biological evolution, for example, we feel forced to choose between science and our faith. Wrestling with Faith was created to tackle questions like these—the “big issues” that keep people from an intimate relationship with G-d. The course acknowledges the often unspoken doubts and fears that all people share, and seizes their invitation for us to dig deeper for the answers.