THE WOMEN’S VA’AD

With Rebbetzin Dina Schoonmaker

Dates: Starts Spring Term, Dates/Times TBD.

Level: Intermediate

Modality: Va’ad and Recordings, Chevruta, Kaballot; 6 sessions

Tuition: Chaverim: $300 Non-Chaverim: $360

The gates of the “Women’s Va’ad” are open to our community! The Women’s Va’ad is based on the teachings of Rebbetzin Dina Schoonmaker of Jerusalem and is limited to ten participants.

This facilitated six-month course covers several middot, among them anger/ka’as, patience/savlanut, judging others favorably, and tranquility/menuchat ha nefesh.

You’ll meet or study weekly, listening to the Rebbetzin’s recordings, and meeting with your va’ad and chevruta. To help guide you through the Rebbetzin’s teachings is a Source Sheet of references in the order she quotes them. These sources are also to be used to create an affirmation phrase for chanting. Each of the Rebbetzin’s lessons ends with a monthly practice (kabbalah), which becomes your focus for the month. Prepare to discuss this practice both with your chevruta partner and with your va’ad mates.

Rebbetzin Dina Schoonmaker is a teacher, popular lecturer, and relationship counselor. A staff member of Michlalah Jerusalem College for over 20 years, Dina teaches numerous courses and runs a counseling hotline for alumni where she deals with issues such as dating and marital harmony. In addition, Dina lectures extensively throughout the seminary circuit on topics of Mussar and personal development through the eyes of the Torah. More recently, Dina began a series of live Mussar va’adim for women throughout Israel. In response to many requests to offer her va’ad internationally, she decided to launch a va’ad by teleconference so that anyone, anywhere, has the opportunity to participate at their convenience. Since TMI’s first Israel trip, Dina has led The Mussar Institute’s Israel Women’s va’ad over a two year period.

Rabbi Judith Edelstein, facilitator of the va’ad, is a post-denominational teacher, spiritual leader, counselor, and writer who has worked in synagogues, long-term care facilities, and Jewish organizations. She said, “The practice of highlighting different middot enabled me to see my own areas of strength in addition to characteristics that required constant vigilance. This focus created an opportunity for me to be conscious of traits that needed only fine-tuning and those that demanded much more.

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