Archive for the ‘A Renewed Credo’ Category

Publications, etc., by Reb Zalman (a’h)

Tuesday, July 10th, 2018

Rabbi Daniel Siegel sends the following: The ALEPH Canada Web Site,, offers Reb Zalman’s books, CD’s and DVD’s as digital downloads. Prices are in Canadian dollars. Other items listed below are offered by Amazon.

Here is the current listing (updated 7/10/2018):

* Credo of a Modern Kabbalist (with Daniel Siegel) ($18)

* An English Siddur for Weekdays (temporarily unavailable)

* First Steps to a New Jewish Spirit (with Donald Gropman) (available from Amazon)

* Gate to the Heart: An Evolving Process (edited by Robert Esformes) (available from Amazon)


Don’t Diminish From Torah Its Renewal

Monday, July 22nd, 2013

Click here for the Hebrew text which comes from Yishmiru Daat, page 73.

Do not add to the word, etc., nor diminish from it, (Deuteronomy 4:2).

[We are invited to collaborate and participate in defining our Jewish practice in ways that are meaningful to us and yet, our text is clear: We are not to add to what was heard from Moshe and we are not to diminish from it. What gives here?]

Moshe Rabbeinu ah is saying, “When God commanded it to me, I said it to you, and now you wish to take what I said and hand it over to someone else referencing me as the source, then, Do not add to the word which I command, etc.

Although according to the statement (Yerushalmi Megillah 28a) that everything taught for all future times by an advanced Torah scholar was already given on the level of Moshe on Sinai, regarding something that Moshe did not himself say and which the Torah scholar subsequently innovated, these are handed over in the name of the innovator, because he innovated, sorted it out and removed anything negative from off of the new Torah / teaching that he innovated.

And the person who says something in the name of the one who first said it (Mishneh Avot 6:6) brings into the world the freeing of humanity from bondage. And the person who hangs something which Moshe didn’t say off a tree as tall as Moshe Rabbeinu does the reverse, he enslaves humanity. And another case, whoever says a thing in the name of Moshe the faithful shepherd only saying a part of the thing, for example, hishamru lachem pen yifteh livavichem / beware lest your heart be misled [terrible things will happen to you], but he doesn’t say kimei hashamayim al haaretz / “Heavenly days right here on Earth” [if you follow the Mitzvot], this person is transgressing the commandment that you shouldn’t diminish the word.

For when you say the words of Moshe in their context without omissions and in the way they were meant to be understood, they are the Torah. And similarly (Tikkunei Zohar 114), the teachings of Moshe are not to be diminished in any generation, God forbid,  from the second side of truth and the seventy faces of the Torah (Zohar I 47) forwards and backwards.

[Innovations based on Torah of Moshe together with perspectives of shifted paradigm, reality maps and our Emet / Truth as experienced in the present time are Torah from us.]

Reb Zalman’s Offerings Through Aleph Store

Tuesday, July 28th, 2009

The ALEPH Canada Web Site,, offers Reb Zalman’s books, CD’s and DVD’s as digital downloads. Prices are in Canadian dollars.

Here is the current listing:

* Credo of a Modern Kabbalist (with Daniel Siegel) ($18)

* An English Siddur for Weekdays (temporarily unavailable)

* First Steps to a New Jewish Spirit (with Donald Gropman) (available from Amazon)

* Gate to the Heart: An Evolving Process (edited by Robert Esformes) (available from Amazon)


Renewal is not Judaism-Lite

Friday, January 30th, 2009

This wonderful and inspiring talk of Reb Zalman’s, originally given in the late 1990’s, can be found on the  Yishmiru Daat dvd, available from Aleph Resources.  It paints a picture of Reb Zalman’s role in the shaping of Jewish Renewal in our time.  Enjoy!  Gabbai Seth Fishman, BLOG Editor.

Renewal Is Not Judaism-Lite
by Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi


Tamid Echad / Always and Forever One
Not Judaism-Lite
Holocaust Losses
Kumran USA
Religious Environmentalist
The Havurah Movement and the Jewish Catalogue
Jewish Renewal Gains Momentum
My Teachers
Focus: Restoration or Renewal?
Internalizing the Renewal of Judaism
A Renewal Mashal / Analogy
Renewal Is Not Heresy
Building a Future
Loving Jews and Loving All
From Empathy to Compassion
Investing in Shaping the God-field
The lamed-vavniker‘s Curriculum
Paradigm Shift
Moral/Faith Development
Soul and Mind Development
Ger Tzedek, Ger Toshav
Recharging our Souls in Israel
Internationlization of Renewal
A Renewed Halachah
In Conclusion


Aquarian Birth Pangs

Thursday, November 20th, 2008

In 1991, Reb Zalman taught a class at the Kallah entitled, “Renewal Is Not Heresy:  Where we differ from the Sabbatians.”  A revised version of the original transcript is still available from Aleph as, “Renewal Is Judaism Now.” 

 Here’s the introduction to the shiur:

“Jewish Renewal speaks of paradigm shifts and reformatting our tradition.  We are rooted in Hassidism; we are influenced by the tradition; and at the same time, we participate in consciously reinterpreting our relationship to it. 

“Hassidism was not understood at its inception.  It was lumped with the movement that had been associated with Shabbetai Zvi. 

“In these sessions, we will compare and contrast the theological, psychological and cosmological foundations of our current self-understanding.”

It was an amazing class.  It was as if God had hired Reb Zalman to faciliate at a summit strategy session for Judaism.  The CEO, (HaShem, Yitbarach), invited us to participate in the creation of an updated vision statement for Moshiach.  All were invited, because God wants our input.  

There was something in the air in 1991 still left over from the sixties; a sense that infrastructure of religions, governments and institutions was up for reshaping. 


A Renewed Jewish Credo

Monday, October 22nd, 2007

The following is from Reb Zalman’s 1991 shiur "Renewal is Not Heresy" during which participants worked on envisioning a Judaism of the future.  The shiur is now available from Aleph under the title "Renewal Is Judaism Now."  Gabbai Seth Fishman, BLOG Editor Reb Zalman says:

"We have a consensus that, by and large, is tacit, not explicit.  And there is a process which fuels the consensus of who we are.  "The consensus has energy that wants the tikkun / the repair of broken things and it wants to bring these things about, the new possibilities of integration, and it wants to use whatever tools and magic it has to bring these things about.   "The agreements are formed very often by something like gossip.  There is a power-with situation that is governed by the "gossip’s" flow in a community.  And that gossip determines, to a large extent, what the consensus of the pious will be.  "The conventional wisdom underlying that consensus is taken for granted by the participants who are shaping the consensus.  There is a certain kind of agreement that floats in the air.  The agreement is the template of society.  It is a conventional wisdom through which the consensus is sort of programmed.  "Mordechai Kaplan helped us see that we are no longer operating with unconscious re-interpretation.  We are aware of what we are doing when we are doing it.   "For example, we do not tell ourselves that what Albert Einstein said is what Moishe Rabbeinu really meant when he taught us the Torah.  When we say that what Einstein said is what Moishe really meant, we add that this is a a drosh / an interpretation.  And reinterpretations happen for everyone as cosmologies change and they give us pause.   Because if our institutions don’t reflect the new cosmologies, then we are faced with a gap between our beliefs and our institutions. "I want to find out the consensus of our committed so that I can help accelerate the closing of this gap.  Rather than being implicit, I want to make the consensus of our commitment explicit. 

(NOTE:  Please share something of your implicit conventional wisdoms at the end of the article.  Gabbai Seth)