Congregation Beth Sholom's HaLuach: February 1 – 7
Torah Byte :
Parashat Bo

"No more exploitation of the weak, racial discrimination, or ghettoes of poverty! Never again!" So declared Pope John Paul II in 1999. He called for a different way of living in keeping with his religious ideals, and he argued that the Church should not achieve these goals through partisan politics or by revolutionary violence.


Mark Your Calendars For PURIMPALOOZA!
Introducing David Agam

CBS is pleased to introduce our new Youth Advisor, David Agam.

David recently wrote an open letter to our USY, Kadima, and Shabbat School families. We’re sharing it here so that the CBS community at large can have an opportunity to learn a bit more about David.


This Shabbat, February 4, our community kiddush lunch is sponsored by Jean Tepper in honor of the memory of her beloved late husband, Melvin Segal.
To learn more about kiddush sponsorship or to inquire about available dates,
please email Executive Chef Jane Sykes or call 415-940-7123.
Thinking Matters

This week, please join Dr. Michael Thaler for the fifth session of his eight-part mini-course, Elie Wiesel and the Problems of Holocaust Representation.

Elie Wiesel is universally recognized as the leading voice of Holocaust commemoration and interpretation. This course will trace Wiesel’s trajectory from mute survivor to the world’s foremost interlocutor of the Shoah, and his journey, recently completed, from dejected mourner for his lost faith to devout practitioner.

Please note that Dr. Thaler's class meets on: February 2, March 2 & 30, & April 20

DATE: Thursday, February 2
TIME: 6:30 – 8 p.m.
WHERE: Main Meeting Room
COST: FREE for members; $12 for nonmembers



CBS Book Club for Kids
(Grades 4 & 5)

We are thrilled to launch a Jewish historical fiction book club for CBS Shabbat School students in Grades 4 and 5. Our plan is for the group to meet 2-3 times per year.

The first book is Secrets in the House of Delgado, by Gloria Miklowitz. In Spain in 1492, fourteen-year-old Maria, a Catholic orphan, becomes a servant to a wealthy family of Conversos, converted Jews, at a time when the Jews are being expelled from the country and when the Inquisition is diligently searching for religious heretics.
Our discussion will be facilitated by CBS congregant and Jewish Community Library (JCL) Director Howard Freedman. The book is available at the JCL or San Francisco Public Library, or you can purchase the book online or check if your local book store has it or can order it for you.

Dinner will be served. Space is limited.

DATE: Thursday, February 2
TIME: 6 p.m. (after Shabbat School)
WHERE: Boardroom
RSVP: Please email Elin Cohen to RSVP
COST: $10/child (preferably paid via PayPal)

CBS Book Club for Kids
(Grades 6 – 8)

The book for this meeting is A Bottle in the Gaza Sea, by Valerie Zenatti. Told primarily through emails, this is the story of two young people on opposite sides of a political chasm: Naïm is Palestinian and lives in Gaza, and Tal is Israeli and lives in Jerusalem. Their thoughts about their lives and about the political situation are carefully presented, and their musings and growing relationship constitute the central action of the novel.
The book is available at the Jewish Community Library, on-line or you can ask your local book store to order the book for you.
A cold lunch will be served. Space is limited.

DATE: Saturday, February 4
TIME: 12 p.m.
WHERE: Boardroom
RSVP: Please email Elin Cohen to RSVP
COST: $10/child (preferably paid via PayPal)

A Minyan Resolution

Are you in need of a secular New Year’s resolution? Please consider sustaining and strengthening our CBS minyan through participation.

Just pick one day of the week (or even just one day a month), and commit to joining the minyan for davening in the morning, evening, or both. Not only will you sometimes have the privilege and honor of making minyan when a mourner from outside the community has come to CBS to say Kaddish; you might even find yourself surprised by the value of a regular commitment to Jewish prayer.



Achshav Yisrael :
Inequality & The Politics Of Inequality In Israel

Join Achshav Yisrael and and Professor Michael Shalev to consider economic inequality in Israel. Professor Shalev is a visiting professor and political scientist at UC Berkeley’s Institute for Jewish Law and Israel Studies. He is also Professor Emeritus in the Departments of Sociology and Political Science at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Economic inequality in Israel is amongst the highest in the developed world, and follows national and ethnic as well as class lines. Professor Shalev will discuss these parameters and will pose two puzzles arising from the Israeli case. First, why do economic issues play such a modest role in Israeli politics, and why has there never been a unified counter-movement of the disadvantaged? Second, what drove an exceptional case – the 2011 mass protests in which hundreds of thousands of Israelis demanded a more interventionist and redistributive state? He will also review what has happened since the protests.

Professor Shalev’s presentation will be followed by facilitated “break-out” group conversations. The lecture is designed to lay a foundation of knowledge for future Achshav Yisrael events on social issues in Israel.

An Israeli appetizer buffet and refreshments are included.

DATE: Sunday, February 12
TIME: 3:30  5:30 p.m.
WHERE: Koret Hall
COST: $10

Kadima Konvention

We are very excited to announce that CBS will host a regional convention for children in Kadima, the youth organization for middle school kids affiliated with the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism (USY). Kids in Grades 6 and 7 from all over Northern California are invited to participate in this Kadima Konvention, a very special weekend filled with fun activities, learning, Social Action/Tikkun Olam, and much more. 

More information about the weekend and registration will be shared soon. For now, just mark your calendars! (Parents with kids in SFUSD, please note that the convention is during the last weekend of spring break.)

DATE: Friday, March 31 – Sunday, April 2
WHERE: CBS campus

Origins Of Totalitarianism From Hannah Arendt To Today

DATE: Thursday, February 9
TIME: 6:30 p.m.
WHERE: Main Meeting Room

COST: FREE for CBS members


Thinking Through Halakhic Mind/Man In Soloveitchik

DATE: Thursday, February 16
TIME: 6:30 p.m.
WHERE: Main Meeting Room

COST: FREE for CBS members


Rabbi Gedaliah Fleer,
Healing in the Kabbalistic Tradition

DATE: Sunday, February 12
TIME: 12 p.m.
WHERE: Private Home (RSVP for info)

COST: $40

The closing section of each HaLuach newsletter features a Jewish-interest news item or curiosity. We generally prioritize the obscure and offbeat, and we welcome reader suggestions. 

This past Sunday afternoon, mired in the anxious frustration brought on by too much NPR, I turned off the news and put on the late, great Leonard Cohen's final album, You Want It Darker. Cohen's lyrics are so compelling it's impossible to treat his music as mere background.
The second song on the album, "Treaty," includes the following verse:

I heard the snake was baffled by his sin
He shed his scales to find the snake within
But born again is born without a skin
The poison enters into everything

The verse is seductive and lovely, but also tragic and inviting of contemplation. That's typical of Cohen; his lyrics and songs are at once precise and expansive, particular and universal.

No surprise, then, that musician Aaron Lightstone (a bandmember of CBS favorite, Jaffa Road) described Cohen as "like Shakespeare, Bach, and Rembrandt" in a recent radio interview on CBC radio. Click just below to listen to the interview with Aaron. And click through the video clip that follows to listen to "Treaty," which this particular communications guy hears as a sorrowful, loving testament to the current divisions felt across the Western world.

The CBS morning minyan-aires deliver soulful and delicious eats to your Inbox each Tuesday...and they would like to remind you that they serve breakfast and tasty treats every day.
Come. Pray. Eat.

We've got more wet stuff in the forecast (yay!), so the minyan-aires thought they'd share a recipe for Miso-Tahini Squash Soup with Brown Rice, described as "the perfect cure-all on a blustery day."

Wednesday, February 1
Morning minyan, 7 a.m., GFC
Evening minyan, 6 p.m., GFC
Mah Jongg, 6:30 p.m., MMR
Zumba, 7 p.m., KH

Thursday, February 2
Morning minyan, 7 a.m., GFC
Evening minyan, 6 p.m., GFC
Book Club for Kids (Grades 4 & 5), 6 p.m., BR
Thinking Matters, 6:30 p.m., MMR

Friday, February 3
Morning minyan, 7 a.m., GFC
Kabbalat Shabbat service, 6:30 p.m., GFC
Saturday, February 4
Zohar meditation, 8:30 a.m., MS
Shabbat services, 9 a.m., SANC
Book Club for Kids (Grades 6–8), 12 p.m., BR
Psalms: A Shelter In The Word, 4 p.m., BR
Evening minyan, 5 p.m., GFC

Sunday, February 5
Morning minyan, 8 a.m., GFC
Intro To Judaism, 10 a.m., BR
Evening minyan, 6 p.m., GFC

Monday, February 6
Morning minyan, 7 a.m., GFC
Evening minyan, 6 p.m., GFC
Zumba, 7 p.m., KH

Tuesday, February 7
Morning minyan, 7 a.m., GFC
Evening minyan, 6 p.m., GFC
Location Key:
BR: Board Room   EGP: Eva Gunter Plaza   GFC: Gronowski Family Chapel   KH: Koret Hall
KIT: Kitchen   MMR: Main Meeting Room   MS: Makom Sholom   RC: Rainbow Courtyard
RL: Rabin Library   SANC: Sanctuary   SCH: Beth Sholom School Bldg.
VAR: various CBS campus locations

CBS strives to be an innovator in the rapidly changing world of American Judaism. We create opportunities for contemporary Jews, along with their loved ones and friends, to share authentic and meaningful religious and spiritual experiences. We also aim to build and sustain a community inspired to make a positive difference in the world.

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