Tzedek & Tikkun

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Like all Kavana programs, this event is powered by partners, staff and participants.
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The Kavana community is engaged in tzedek (justice) and tikkun (repair) work in so many ways. Anyone who's interested in the topic is invited to join us as we share what we've been working on and thinking about, offer each other support and advice, and begin to deepen Kavana's internal social justice network. This meeting will be on Zoom. Kavana partners Chava Monastersky and Matthew Offenbacher will facilitate.

In December, we spotlighted Kavana partner Rachel Doyle for a Jewish Learning Moment that gave us a reflection on how Jewish teachings connect us to activism. Here is what Rachel shared:

Tzedek and Tikkkun met this past Sunday and I had the honor of sharing some Jewish teaching I'd recently learned.  The following teaching comes from Rabbi Ari Lev, who is on the faculty of Svara.
"One midrash wonders: How did Noah manage to survive the flood and live to see his children exit the ark, thus begetting a new generation of humanity? How did Moses go from fleeing from Pharaoh to plunging him into the sea? How did Joseph go from being shackled in prison to a governor in Pharaoh’s court? How did Mordechai go from being ready for the gallows to executing his executioners?
In other words, what made it possible for Noah and Moses and Joseph and Mordechai to transform their circumstances, to live into a radically new reality? Now the midrash doesn’t just ask the question. It actually goes way out of its way to offer an answer. And in every case, for each of these people, the answer is the same.
The midrash offers two answers as to what allowed our ancestors to survive near annihilation.
First: Ela ra’a olam hadash.
That they could envision a new world.
But also that they sustained others.
Noah sustained everyone in the Ark. Moses sustained the Israelites in the wilderness for 40 years. Joseph distributed grain during the 7 years of famine. And Mordechai, this one I am particularly partial to as a trans person, Mordechai nursed Esther, the midrash tells us.
On the precipice of annihilation, our ancestors had the courage to dream big and take care of each other. And according to our sages, that is what saved them. And that is what will save us."  
I shared the above teaching because it outlined  two things I think are essential to transforming our world- envisioning a better reality AND taking care of each other as we survive our current system and work for change.  In many ways, taking care of each other is a way of bringing that more repaired world into reality. I feel so grateful to come from a tradition of world envisioners and sustainers and strive every day to find new ways I can live both of these values.  Based on the conversations we've had so far, I think many of the folks at Kavana are continuing this tradition as well.

Thank you, Rachel, for sharing your learning with us!

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