Lev Tahor blends the singing of the traditional liturgy of the Friday evening service with contemporary English readings and reflections. All are welcome to come as they are, from wherever they are, and enjoy the space created together. Part of the vision behind Lev Tahor involves bringing together different voices from our community to create a joyous, moving Kabbalat Shabbat and Maariv experience for all of us. Whether or not you know the words, we hope you will join in. Humming and la, la, la always work as a way to add your voice to the community. There is no “right” way to participate. We are all building this community together.
Lev Tahor services, held on the first Friday night of the month are followed by a dairy/pareve potluck dinner and program.
Lev Tahor and Latke-Hamantaschen Debate
Friday, March 3 | 6:30PM
Join us for our somewhat-annual Latke-Hamantaschen debate, following our all-sung lay-led Lev Tahor service (beginning at 6:30PM). First enjoy a delicious "fake treif" potluck dinner (parve, dairy, kosher fish, and vegetarian interpretations of all those forbidden foods). Then sit back and enjoy the scholarship of some of our most illustrious members as they provide exegeses on the relative merits (and flaws) of the lovely latke and the heroic hamantaschen. Past PSJC scholarship explored the archaeological roots of the latke, the psychosocial development of hamantaschen, and a mathematical proof that the two foods are equivalent! RSVP requested.
Last Lev Tahor
Lev Tahor: Tikkun Olam, via the Gowanus Canal Conservancy
Friday, December 2 | 6:30PM
Please save the date and plan to join Lev Tahor, PSJC's all-sung, lay-led Kabbalat Shabbat Service. Services will be followed by a dairy/parve pot luck dinner -- RSVP here -- and a presentation by the Conservancy, a 10-year-old local nonprofit that aims to transform a onetime Superfund site into a clean, safe, accessible Brooklyn waterway. Learn how they moved from idea to reality -- and bring your questions about grass-roots projects that lead to real change. Please be sure to sign up!
The service begins with Yedid Nefesh on page 252 in Sim Shalom. During the service, page numbers are not announced, but there will be a binder showing the current page number. Please keep your eyes out for it as needed. In general, the service progresses through the siddur without a lot of skipping around. During Kabbalat Shabbat, we proceed through a series of psalms and L’kha Dodi, as we recall the week that has just passed. Sometimes we sing the psalms together, all the way through.
If you do not read Hebrew, please ask an usher or the Rabbi Carter for a transliteration of the service. Note that the silent prayer during the Ma’ariv service is not transliterated. Please feel free to use the English translation in the siddur or the prayers in your heart.
There is a choreography to the service that may be confusing at times. Certain prayers are said standing, while others are said sitting. Please feel free to look around and find someone to follow as you are comfortable. Remember, if it is difficult for you to stand, you can feel free to sit at any time.
Following services, we hope you'll stay for kiddush, (wine and grape juice), hamotzi,(challah) and cookies.
Lev Tahor with Author Shulem Deen
Friday, January 8 | 6:30PM
And get your 2016 calendar ready: Save the date, January 8, for an extraordinary literary evening at PSJC, when author Shulem Deen (“All Who Go Do Not Return”) will be our guest and teacher. (Get the book at shul member Ezra Goldstein's Community Books or Terrace Books -- or at the BPL, NYPL or electronically.) Link for January dinner here.
Lev Tahor: Human Rights Shabbat
Friday, December 4 | 6:30 PM
Join Rabbi Carie Carter at Lev Tahor services on Human Rights Shabbat. We look forward to learning with Rabbi Carie about how we can advance and promote human rights in our everyday lives, and about current human rights campaigns in the Jewish world. Services are followed by a dairy/pareve potluck dinner, to which all are invited. (Sign up here.)
Lev Tahor Services followed by a Potluck Dinner and Program with Max Nissen, PSJC Rabbinic Intern
Friday, November 6 | 6:30 PM
Heretics and Believers In an Age of Reason: Is belief reasonable in a modern and post-modern world? What might it mean to affirm both belief and a scientific worldview? Are we all heretics in classical Jewish terms? And is that a bad thing? Please join us as we discuss these questions and explore our own spiritual biographies, struggles, and discoveries. Sign up for the potluck here.
Join friends and members at this all-singing, lay-led (and energetic) service, which will be followed by a pareve/dairy potluck dinner and a special program with PSJC Rabbinic Intern Raysh Weiss. Tradition says making 3 matches earns you a place in heaven. Raysh has recently received funding from several grants, including one from the Myers Foundation Grant at JTS for the launching of innovative outreach projects and from the Alumni Venture Fund of the Bronfman Youth Fellowships, to create a network of matchmakers dedicated to pluralistic matchmaking for Jews of all backgrounds and orientations who are seriously seeking a partner. Raysh feels it is through community that we can make meaningful connections. The talk will incorporate a mix of traditional Jewish texts and also draw on our own experiences and values to consider our role in communal matchmaking. Come out and sing, learn with Raysh, and enjoy a savory nosh – sign up for the dairy/pareve potluck dinner and join what promises to be an extraordinary evening.
Lev Tahor: Faith, Belonging, Conformity and Conflict in an emerging genre of popular Jewish literature.
Friday, January 3 | 6:30PM
In the 1960’s the popular novels of Jewish life centered on the struggles of young men such as Reuven Malter and Daniel Saunders in The Chosen, Asher Lev in My Names is Asher Lev and even Alexander Portnoy. Nowadays, from Pearl Abraham’s A Romance Reader to Eve Harris’ The Marriage of Chani Kaufman, young orthodox women have moved to center stage in popular novels of Jewish life. In this program, PSJC members Angela Weisl and David Rosen (Professors of Literature and Anthropology respectively) examine the central issues of faith, belonging, conformity and conflict in an emerging genre of popular Jewish literature.
Lev Tahor: Autism and the Jewish Community – An Aspie perspective
Friday, December 5 | 6:30PM
Services followed by a potluck dinner and speaker Dylan Rothbein
Dylan Rothbein, who describes himself as a young “Aspie” who wants to become a leader in his community of Autistic youth.
What’s a nice Jewish girl doing in a place like this? Lev Tahor and speaker Rabbi Sarah Zacharia
Friday, November 7 | 6:30PM
With Rabbi Sara Zacharia: What’s a nice Jewish girl doing in a place like this? The Jews having been telling and retelling their stories for generations. Each of us has a story. Rabbi Zacharia’s is a story from ultra-orthodoxy to becoming a Conservative rabbi and beyond. This talk will explore how the Jewish tradition provides a framework for storytelling and why perhaps in the 21st century there are so many people writing memoirs.
Rabbi Zacharia most recently moved back to Brooklyn to be closer to her daughter, Sasha. She has been a rabbi for 15 years, ordained as a member of the first class at the Ziegler School for Rabbinic Studies in Los Angeles. Rabbi Zacharia’s rabbinate brought her to Boston and LA. She has developed and teaches Jewish mindfulness through study, meditation, prayer and eating practices. Rabbi Zacharia posts a weekly TorahTweet on the parasha @rebzee99.
Rabbi Zacharia practices meditation, enjoys reading, dancing, music, knitting and long walks. Her interests include urban farming, environmental and food justice.
Lev Tahor followed by Poverty and Social Justice in Israel Discussion
Friday, March 7 | 6:30PM
Following a rousing Lev Tahor Kabbalat Shabbat service, join us for a vegetarian, dairy potluck dinner and a compelling conversation with Brownstone Brooklyn's first community shlicha, Orly Dabush Nitzan, about issues of poverty in Israel.
As a lawyer and a director of Neve Schechter and the chair of Shacharit-Creating Common Cause, Orly has been actively involved in social justice in Israel and works towards Israel engagement in our community at large.
Lev Tahor with Annie Polland and Daniel Soyer
Friday, April 12 | 6:30PM
Annie Polland and Daniel Soyer describe New York's transformation into a Jewish city at the turn of the 20th century. Their recent book, The Emerging Metropolis: New York Jews in the Age of Immigration, 1840-1920, is volume two of City of Promises: A History of the Jews of New York, winner of the 2012 National Jewish Book Award for Jewish Book of the Year. Polland and Soyer tell the story of New York's emergence as the greatest Jewish city of all time. Though the deadline for signing up for dinner has passed, please join us for the talk beginning at approximately 8:15 p.m.
Questions? Email Helene.