Renewing Our Collective Soul: A Virtual Program For Our Times

About the Program

In these times of physical distancing, it's hard to feel connected to our innermost selves. Many of us are doing the best that we can just to stay afloat, that we haven't had the chance to touch base with our souls.

Even though we can't gather in person at this time, ALEPH: Alliance for Jewish Renewal invites you to (virtually) join us for Renewing Our Collective Soul: A Virtual Program For Our Times. 

Teachers and leaders from all over the globe will host sessions on meditation, embodied movement, spiritual direction, and so much more––gently guiding us to spaces where we can connect with our deepest selves. 

All programs are pay-what-you-wish. All donations will directly support the work of ALEPH and Jewish Renewal programming, and we are thankful for any amount you can donate. If you're unable to make a donation at this time, that's okay too. We welcome you.

New offerings will continue to be added, so be sure to check back here often. 

Session Overview

Upcoming Programs
  • Awakening Inner Freedom Through Integral Kabbalah Meditation (Reb Brian Yosef Schachter-Brooks)
  • Coming Home: The Season of Teshuvah | Preparing for the New Year (Rabbi Debra Smith)
  • Core Strengthening for Your Sephirot: Cultivating Stability and Joy Irrespective of Circumstance (Rachael Resch)
  • Silence is Praise: Metivta-Style Morning Meditation Service (Rabbi Anne Brener)
  • Virtual Concert Series - Sing a New Song Psalms Showcase Featuring Cantor Linda Hirschhorn, Rabbi David Shneyer, and friends
  • Virtual Concert Series - Rosh Chodesh Elul | Evening of Kirtan Chant Featuring the Kirtan Rabbi and friends
  • The World is Changing and We Are Changing, Too: An Intergenerational Conversation for This Moment (Kohenet Keshira haLev Fife and Rabbi Eva Sax-Bolder)

Past Programs
  • Embodying Your Jewish Practice (Rabbi Diane Elliot)
  • Heartfulness for (This and) All Times: An Introduction to Jewish Contemplative Practice (Rabbi Jeff Roth)
  • Here Comes the Sun! A Solstice Celebration to Stay in the Mystical Light of Hope (Rabbi Geela Rayzel Raphael and friends)
  • Spiritual Practices for Challenging Times - Part One (Rabbi Debra Smith)
  • Spiritual Practices for Challenging Times - Part Two (Rabbi Debra Smith)
  • Spiritual Practices for Challenging Times - Part Three (Rabbi Debra Smith)
  • Tales and Teachings of Reb Zalman (Rabbi Geela Rayzel Raphael and friends)
  • Virtual Concert Series - An Evening of Social Justice and Praise Featuring Nefesh Mountain and Hazzan Jessi Roemer 
  • Virtual Concert Series - Erev Shel Kochavim: An Evening of Stars | ALEPH Virtual Cabaret
  • Zoom Gala Gala: The Art of the Omer Journey | Celebrate Lag B’Omer with a Bonfire of Joyous Expression (Rabbi Geela Rayzel Raphael and friends)

Session Descriptions

The World is Changing and We Are Changing, Too: An Intergenerational Conversation for This Moment
Dates: Sundays: August 9, and September 13
Time: 7 pm EDT (4 pm PDT)
Cost: Pay-what-you-can 

Description: Join us for an intergenerational conversation in this era of Physical Distancing. We will explore some of the big questions that have arisen during this time and create space to share responses from voices across the generations. This session is for anyone who is drawn to the alchemy of elders and youngers together - addressing the here and now - with all of its beauty and grief. In facilitated break out groups, we will tap into relevant topics including loneliness and being alone; isolation and separation; and guilt-free spaciousness to explore and develop aspects of ourselves. How can we learn from each other's perspectives as we adjust to a new ‘normal’? How has living in these times influenced our thoughts about death and dying? 

These three sessions are part of an ongoing conversation, but each session can also be taken individually. Please register for any/all below.


Awakening Inner Freedom Through Integral Kabbalah Meditation

Dates: Sunday, August 23
Time: 8 pm EDT (5 pm PDT)
Cost: Pay-what-you-can  


Spiritual awakening is the realization that you are far more than your thoughts and feelings. Beneath your personality, there’s a radiant field of awareness, free from negativity and connected to the aliveness of the present moment. In these challenging times, learning to experience this inner freedom is more crucial than ever, and will greatly deepen your connection with Elul and the upcoming Days of Awe. Reb Brian Yosef brings to life the Presence- deepening teachings and practices of Judaism in a direct and experiential way through transformational teachings, heart-opening chanting and deep silence. 


Coming Home: The Season of Teshuvah | Preparing for the New Year

Dates: Sunday, August 23
Time: 1 - 2:15 pm EDT (10 - 11:15 am PDT)
Cost: Pay-what-you-can
Presenter: Rabbi Deb Smith

Description: The primary theme for the Jewish High Holy Days is renewal, repentance and return. It is the season of “coming home.” It is a time of our lives for deep introspection, and making amends for “missing the mark” in our relationships with others and with G-d over the past year. Our introspective work can lead to bridge-mending with others, and also can be deep spiritual work with G-d and with self. 

We will explore re-committing to our relationship with G-d, to our spiritual practice, to loving and caring for ourselves. Join us as we gather to study, discuss and pray on the theme of on return, recommitment, and renewal. It is a time to re-calibrate and re-prioritize our lives. Suggested practices for Teshuvah will be provided. This workshop is appropriate for those of all faith traditions.


Silence is Praise: Metivta-Style Morning Meditation Service 
Date and Time: Every Wednesday, 11:30 am EST (8:30 am PST) 
Cost: Pay-what-you-can 
Presenter: Rabbi Anne Brener and Cantorial Student Elizabeth Baseman

Description: Overwhelmed with stress from social distancing, quarantine, and COVID-19? Join Rabbi Anne Brener and AJRCA Student Cantor Elizabeth Baseman for a chanting and meditation service, using the structure of the morning service, to calm our bodies and connect our souls. There will be time for some check-in afterward. 


Core Strengthening for Your Sephirot: Cultivating Stability and Joy Irrespective of Circumstance - POSTPONED
Cost: Pay-what-you-can 


Is it possible to sustain Joy during this time of climate change, pandemic and cultural upheaval? Using simple movement, music and poetry, we will blend somatic and spiritual inquiry in this fun, interactive class. The classes include gentle Nia movement, Feldenkrais, sacred anatomy, and physical and spiritual core strengthening in order to enliven each of the divine energies of the sephirot in our Kabbalah Tree of Life bodies. 

You’ll come away with simple embodiment practices you can do on your own. This three-class series is based on Rachael’s forthcoming book about embodying the sephirot throughout the week. All ages and physical abilities are welcome. No previous movement background is needed.   

  • Your bare feet (if that’s comfortable for you)
  • Comfortable movement clothing
  • A movement space of at least 10 square feet
  • Optional: Yoga mat, knee pads, blanket, pillow


Virtual Concert Series

We are thrilled to announce our brand new concert series for Renewing Our Collective Soul! Each musical program is designed to center and connect us with one another. Each program is pay-what-you-can. Read about each of the programs in detail on our concert series page.

Sunday, August 16th | 7:30 pm EDT

Thursday, August 20th | 7:30 pm EDT


Our Session Leaders

We are thankful for so many incredible leaders who are stepping up to provide space for us to virtually connect. Our leaders are sure to excite, grow, and inspire you––learn more about them below!


When is this event taking place?
This program will be taking place from now through early summer. Like you, we are physically distancing and staying at home, and having minimal contact with others. Although we don't know how long these guidelines will be in effect, we want to provide offerings throughout the duration of that time.

Where is this event taking place?
This event is entirely virtual! You can participate from anywhere in the world. You can even be in your pajamas (we won't tell!)

Do I need an internet connection to participate?
An internet or phone connection is required to be able to participate. We encourage having some sort of camera so that your face can be seen, but a phone will work just fine if needed.

What if I have never done video conferencing before?
That's okay! After you register, you will be given detailed instructions on how to get set up so that you will be able to fully participate in as many sessions as you wish.

How long is each session? How often do they meet?
Session lengths vary based on the program. Refer to the detailed session descriptions above to learn more.