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Va’etkhanan: Upon your Heart

Rabbi Naomi Hyman | Va'etkhanan

Va’etkhanan: Upon your Heart

This week’s Torah portion includes the Sh’ma, one of Judaism’s most important prayers. The Sh’ma is found in Judaism’s daily, Sabbath and holiday liturgy, and is recited before sleep and with one’s dying breath. It was the first prayer that I learned as a child, though my understanding of it has changed over time. The siddur/prayer book that […]

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Rabbi Naomi Hyman | Devarim

Devarim: Wisdom and Understanding

This week we begin the last book of the Torah, Devarim/Deuteronomy. This portion is always read on the Sabbath preceding Tisha B’Av, the ninth day of the Hebrew month of Av. On this date, according to tradition, both the First and Second Temples were destroyed. It is also associated with other traumatic and destructive events in Jewish history. Because this reading […]

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Rabbi Naomi Hyman | Mattot-Massei

Mattot-Massei: Stages of the Journey

This week’s reading is a double portion that concludes the Book of Numbers. Here, I want to focus on the opening of the second portion, Massei: These are the stages of the Children of Israel who went out from the land of Egypt, troop by troop, under the leadership of Moshe and Aharon. (Numbers 33:1) The reading […]

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Taking out the (Mental) Trash

One morning during our recent Silence and Transformation meditation retreat, a garbage truck provided the sound track for our morning prayers. Suddenly my heart was filled with a whimsical longing: I wished that I could take out my mental trash as easily as I dispose of the other unusable, unwanted and no-longer-useful debris of my […]

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Audio: Meditative Yoga

This 75-minute yoga class yoga class was recorded at the  2015 Silence and Transformation meditation retreat with Rabbi David Cooper, Shoshana Cooper, Eliezer Sobel, Beth Resnick-Folk and Rabbi Naomi Hyman To begin the class, lie down on your back on a mat or blanket. The class is suitable for all levels, but take care to trust […]

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Rabbi Naomi Hyman|Pinkhas

Pinkhas: White Spaces

In this week’s reading, Moshe learns that he will see, but not enter, the land that has been promised to the Israelites. After forty years of leading the congregation toward freedom and holiness, on the cusp of fulfillment, he is told that he will not live to see his task completed: YHVH said to Moshe: Go […]

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Audio: Growing into Presence

What would it be like to turn toward the things we spend so much energy trying to escape? Might we be able to grow our capacity for compassionate presence even in difficult situations? This talk includes material drawn from sources as diverse as tantric hatha yoga, Rebbe Nachman of Bratslav and the Dictionary of Obscure […]

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Rabbi Naomi Hyman | Balak

Balak: Integrity

In this week’s Torah portion (Numbers 22:2-25:9), an animal speaks for the second and last time in the Bible. In the first instance, a snake worked against God’s interests; this time, a talking donkey supports it. The narrative begins with the Moabite king, Balak, expressing concern about the Israelite’s impending entry into Moab. He sends […]

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