Time is of the essence. Time is money. Time waits for no one. These familiar phrases form the bedrock for modern life. We all instinctively know the value of time and how important it is to living the American dream. Madison Avenue, book publishers and our own families have continually drummed this concept into our collective subconscious.
But what exactly is the true nature of time and what are the building blocks? Does time exist in the same paradigm for everyone? And why does it seem to go so fast for others and so agonizingly slow for others? These and other provocative questions will be addressed in an upcoming eight-week course entitled “The Kabalah of Time” put on by Chabad of the East Valley starting the week of Feb. 13. All 40,000 students taking the in-depth course around the world will be taking it simultaneously 160 locations.
Kabalah is essentially a mystical and deeper dimension of the Torah, the first five books of Moses in the Bible. “It addresses the essence of the nature of humanity, so that we can have a clear connection with God,” says Rabbi Mendy Deitsch, who will be teaching the course along with Rabbi Mendy Lipskier. “This is an intellectually challenging and emotionally uplifting class.”
According to its creators, the course will use ancient texts of the Kabalah, to address the subject of daily life cycles as well as moments that make up our days. Students will be presented with a novel way of counting days and experiencing the calendar. Not by seconds, minutes and hours, but by cycles and rhythms of seasons, days, and periods of a life that exist on a spiritual level.
Some of the issues the class will explore are “How did time begin? Where did it start and how did it start? What differentiates one moment from another? Why was I born at one particular hour? One of the Kabalah’s philosophies is that every single moment has certain energy, and if you’re tuned in to that energy you know the time instinctively.
Participants in the class will also engage in lively discussions about the cycles and symbolism of the moon, sun, and stars. The 7 day week cycle will be analyzed as well as the theory that each day contains distinctive energies. Other weekly topics include:
The Nature of Time
The Seven-Day Week
Meeting the Shabbat Queen
Sun and Moon
Seasons of Birth
Seasons of Reconciliation
From Darkness to Light
According to Deitsch, there is a custom in certain Jewish communities for a groom to receive a gold watch from the bride’s family. This is done to have him realize that every second is gold. “We have to control time and not allow time to control us,” says Deitsch. “With our frantic lifestyles, consumed by faxes and e-mails, we tend to forget about the present moment, which is ultimately all we have.”
Deitsch stresses that participants of the course can easily grasp the philosophy of the course even if they are not versed in Kabalah, mysticism, or even Judaism.
Many students who are enrolled in the course are eager to begin. “Our lives move fast, sometimes too fast to appreciate its significance,” sys Lillian Edelman, a previous student. “As I get older, I think more about how I might make the most of the time I have left. I for one, am looking forward to hearing the perspective of Rabbi Mendy Deitsch – while at the same time learning from the reactions of my fellow students.”
The course, which costs $99, comes complete with textbooks and academically challenging material. The curriculum is put together by the greatest minds in Jewish adult education, according to Deitsch.
Eight week courses start on Monday, February 13 - 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM at Chabad Center for Jewish Life, 3855 W. Ray Rd. Sunday, February 19, 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM. In addition, Wednesday, February 15 from 10: AM – 11:30 AM at the East Valley JCC – 908 N. Alma School Rd, Chandler. Adult Education Coordinator: Fran Mazor“The Kabalah of Time” is affiliated with the worldwide Jewish Learning Institute, an international adult education institute providing courses worldwide. For more information on the the Institute, go to www.muJLI.com. Visit Chabad’s website at www.chabadcenter.com. For more information please call (480) 855-4333 or email firstname.lastname@example.org