Table Talk is an homage to the rebbe’s tisch (Yiddish for table). There the Hasidic Rebbe would share novel Torah interpretations, and his Hasidim would dance and sing into the night. Many books of Hasidic thought are in fact transcriptions of the sermons and stories delivered around these tables. It was at the tisch that one learned not just how to think or how to study, but how to live Hasidically.
Yet those long tables traditionally had one man seated at the head, spatially signifying a rigid social hierarchy. Our proposed tisch is circular. Table Talk will feature many voices, all sharing a way to live neo-Hasidically — but never the way. Jewish leaders will respond to specific questions about their personal religious lives, and give vulnerable insights into their own inner practices and struggles. Table Talk will be a peek into conversations with these teachers, but a conversation only becomes real with a response.
To foster dialogue and the sharing of wisdom, we have also created a space for community contributions.
We invite you to join us in these conversations around our virtual table.
the prayer column
Dr. Shaul Magid
September 4th, 2023
Rabbi Jill Hammer, PhD
September 6th, 2023
Rabbi Rachel Barenblat
September 8th, 2023
Rav Micha'el Rosenberg
September 11th, 2023
Rabbi Nancy Flam
September 13th, 2023
Reb Pinchas of Koretz used to say that “people think they pray to God. But this is not the case: prayer itself is the essence of God.”
The “essence of God,” however, is indescribable, and can only be known experientially. How can we cultivate a relationship with the “essence of God” that enables us to encounter for ourselves what is beyond words? We asked five leaders from different segments of the Jewish world to tell us about their practices and experiences of prayer. Perhaps the ways that they maintain their relationships with the divine can help us to develop our own.