Last week, I led a conversation for young adults to go over the Passover Seder(s) in order to mentally prepare for it. Taking place in Long Beach on the Sunday prior to the holiday, I led a relaxed conversation (over beer – something we would not be enjoying during the holiday), going over the elements of the Passover Seder(s) and to get people ready for what would be taking place.
Beginning with the primary texts in the Book of Genesis, we then explored what rabbis in the Babylonian Talmud and Genesis Rabbah had to say on the matter. We then had the opportunity to taste such possibilities.
The second “Texts & Tasting” event of 2014-2015 took place last night in Long Beach. Combining learning through texts from the Talmud to the Shulhan Arukh and beyond with an Irish whiskey-tasting, more than fifteen people attended this enjoyable event. I was glad to be able to facilitate the learning, which centered on how many candles we light and how we light the candles of Hanukah, which was appropriate for the current festival of Hanukah.
Last night, I led a discussion for young adults on sexual positions in Judaism, which was a lively conversation. As part of my work enriching the lives of young adults, sex comes up not infrequently. So, in a Long Beach version of a discussion I led over a year-and-a-half ago in Orange County, I invited young adults to share some beer and discuss this topic at an apartment of a couple of young adults (who had just moved in), utilizing Talmudic sources in this conversation. It was a great atmosphere to have the conversation and I am glad we were able to have it!
Last night, I led a discussion on shofar-blasting for Rosh HaShanah, which was cheerfully accompanied by a bourbon-tasting. Continuing on with the bimonthly series I began two years ago with a spirits-tasting and learning opportunity, last night’s event focussed on various aspects of shofar-blasting, just in time ahead of Rosh HaShanah this week, to provide participants with a better sense of the mitzvah of shofar-blasting on the holiday.
Participants were treated to four different bourbons, three of which were supplied by participants. The next event in the tasting series will be taking place on Sunday 9 November; topic and spirit TBD (suggestions are welcome).