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I have already blogged about this elsewhere but not over here on this blog. I find it interesting how the subjects in which I am interested in have changed since I started at rabbinical school. I would say that when I started my favourite subjects (and those to which I was most looking forward) were.

1. Chassidute and mysticism (I know that they are not necessary interconnected but I somehow have linked them in my mind).

2. Talmud

3. Mussar

I was not at all interested in either Homiletics or liturgy. I would now say that although I still really enjoy Talmud and am getting much better at it. My two favourite subjects are Homiletics and liturgy. This maybe because I have a bent towards the practical. When I started out as an undergraduate in Chemistry and Biochemistry I had thought I would enjoy the more theoretical elements the most. However I found I loved 'spectrographic methods' and natural product synthesis the most. So maybe this is merely the continuation of old patterns.

Anyway not much is new I study, work, sleep and fit the mundane obligations of necessity in as best I can. The boiler in the flat broke over the weekend which was fun but its mended now. I shall endeavour to be punctilious about keeping this blog updated. But no promises :)
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I am at the midway point. Wow, I really am not at all sure how to feel about this. Part of me is happy to have reached this point. And another part is thinking about how much it has taken to reach this point in terms of physical and emanational resources, not to mention the hard work and money expended and a little part of me is thinking about how much it will take to get from the midway point to the end.

But mainly I am simply enjoying have crossed yet another significant milestone. On another note I am getting ready and getting excited for and about Limmud, although I don't go there until Sunday. I haven't gone to Limmud for the last two years (last year I was just to tired and to stressed) and of course the year before that I was in Israel. It will be really wonderful to see my 'limmud friends' once more. I still have to finish my Limmud sessions and I am also involved with the chevaruta-project. (I helped to produce one day of this years booklet.)

So just 925 days to go.
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Because its November its Shabbat Lech Lecha time. For these we go out across the country to various communities. Last week I was in Blackpool which is a Reform community and this weekend I was in Herefordshire at the HJC, which is a Liberal community.
In Blackpool I led the Friday Night service the one shabbat morning, read from the Torah and gave a sermon.
In Herefordshire it was just a shabbat morning service, reading most of the Torah portion and a sermon. But it proved a long and tiring journey and I really haven't caught up with my work so this week is going to be a bit rushed. Emily and I have our Jewish Care training day on Wednesday and there is the normal work for school as well as Limmud to get ready for.
So I am pretty busy.


Oct. 11th, 2012 11:41 am
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So this is one of my periodic posts about prayer, or more accurately in this case a post about synagogues.

Yesterday we had a comparative religions class for which we had an outside speaker. Patrick it was very interesting hearing about his personal spiritual and religious journey. One thing that he said made an impression one me. He was quoting Arch-bishop Williams who said to a particularly liberal colleague that 'membership of the church is corrosive and the only reason to remain a member is if it brings you closer to God'.

My first thought was can this be applied to Judaism? Would the statement. 'Membership of a synagogue (and or community?) is corrosive and the only reason for remaining a member is if it makes connecting with God easier' be true? And if the answer to this question is either yes or even partly yes. Then the follow up question is does it? Does belonging to a synagogue make forming a relationship with God easier or make that relationship better?

Both of this are interesting and challenging questions. Food for thought.
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Today is my birthday although my party was a few days ago. Today was a relatively easy day although at was just as well because I had almost no sleep. After the service I had my psalms lesson, today it was just me because both my classmates were away. The same was 145 so that made life a little easier.
Then we had rabbinic literature in which we were reading tosefta kiddushin, we didn't make to much progress but it was an interesting discussion. The class after lunch was comparative religion for which we had an outside speaker.
The really nice thing was that my classmates gave me a cake (a caterpiler cake :) and a really nice card.
Then I just came home and had a chat with my family via skype and did a few admin type jobs. Then it was an early night because I have important meetings tomorrow.
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Today was a short day, which is good because I was really tired right from the start. But it was one of those days when I feel as though I haven't learnt all that much. Partly this was because although it was a school day it was also Simchat Torah for the Orthodox and Massorti world. This meant that I didn't have my liturgy lesson.
So my only class was Codes, which as it was an introduction to the course was somewhat basic. But I am sure that it will go on to become a really good class.
The RA was meeting in the drawing room so I got to say Hi to Michael H, and to Mini as well as well as chatting up with Bobby Siliverman, and Larry Becker whom I have not had a chance to say hi too in ages and ages.

Although it was a non-remarkable day, I think that with all the stress and stuff that normally goes on having one normal and unremarkable day is, probably, a good thing.


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December 2013

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