DR./RABBI LAWRENCE HOFFMAN
LECTURE SERIES @ TBE
TUESDAY, MARCH 12, 7-8:30PM
Chance of a Lifetime: Synagogues and the Jewish Future in a Post-Ethnic Era
Rabbi Lawrence A. Hoffman
1. November 13: Builders, Baby-Boomers and Beyond: Looking for American Jewish Identity
Synagogues change and so do we. But before looking at where we go from here, we take a retrospective look at how we got here from there: a nostalgic revisiting of baby-boomers growing up, suburbia and Dr. Spock, marching for Israel and freedom for Refuseniks – and what is left of all that now. This is your life, American Judaism.
2. March 12: Spirituality in Public: Looking for God on the North Shore
A generation ago, one young rabbinic student asked his professor to teach him how to speak Yiddish. “Teach you Yiddish?!” came the reply, “You don’t teach Yiddish; you just open your mouth and it comes out.” The student tried it. It didn’t work. Now, a generation later, more and more people are asking how to talk about and pray to God. As with Yiddish, the assumption has been, “You just open your mouth and it comes out.” Again, it doesn’t. How then do we pray? How do we even discuss God meaningfully? And how do we find God – in all the right places.
3. April 9: Judaism for the Next Generation: Where Does Judaism Go When All the Givens Fail?
We can take nothing for granted anymore. With intermarriage rising, and ethnic memory growing dimmer, why will anyone choose to affirm Judaism as our century proceeds? Why be Jewish at all, anymore? The lecture explores Judaism’s response to the frantic search for human meaning, against the backdrop of science, art, the challenge to tradition, and the “rereligionization” of America.