Course Name: Song of Songs: The Love Song of the Jews to God
Program: Hebrew College Open Circle Jewish Learning: Texts and Traditions
Instructor: Rabbi Jeffrey Amshalem (Read bio)
Day and Time: Sundays 11:45am-1:15pm Eastern Time
Dates: October 15, 22, 29; November 5, 12, 19, 2023 (6 sessions)
Session: Fall 2023
Cohort: Temple Beth David, Westwood, MA
Location: In person at Temple Beth David, Westwood, MA
Fee: $240. (Temple Beth David Member Rate: $204) Financial scholarships available
In this course, we will dive deeply into over two millennia of Jewish interpretations of the Biblical Song of Songs, the book Rabbi Akiva declared “the holy of holies.” Originally written as a set of very human love poems, the Song of Songs was included in the Biblical canon as holy scripture and since then has been interpreted in a tremendously wide variety of ways, some of them quite daring. Beginning with a close reading of the Song and some historical background, we will then read and discuss a variety of rabbinic, philosophical, kabbalistic, and Hasidic commentaries on it, concluding with modern artistic responses to it found in literature, art, and music. We will explore how and why Jews have found such different and powerful messages in this beautiful, ancient love poem.
Hebrew College Open Circle Jewish Learning is for learners of all backgrounds.
Canadian and other registrants from outside of the US: please email Cindy Bernstein to complete your registration. We apologize for the inconvenience.
“Rabbi Amshalem teaches respectfully with gentleness and kindness. He encourages questioning and discovering connections that can lead to ideas that can surprise one.” – Mark Beal, Temple Beth David member