Rabbi Aaron Panken presents "Myth,
Magic, and Mysticism"
Rabbi Aaron Panken, Dean of the New York campus of Hebrew Union
College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR), will offer a fascinating
presentation on " Myth, Magic and Mysticism: Judaism Beyond the
Rational," at Temple Beth El of Boca Raton, Florida on Tuesday evening,
October 15 at 7:30 p.m. in the sanctuary.
Judaism is a religion most often associated with law. Our most
sacred books (the Torah, Mishnah and Talmud, to name a few) are
filled with regulations that dictate each area of life in specific
terms. Few realize that there is another aspect of Judaism, just
as powerful and just as wonderful as the legal side, where feelings,
superstitions, and belief form an intricate web that teaches us
incredible lessons and helps us confront life's most important questions.
This presentation will introduce what lies beyond the rational
in Judaism, defining the myth, magic and mysticism that have informed
our people's lives in every generation, and the meaning we can derive
from it in our own modern context.
Rabbi Panken teaches Rabbinic Literature at HUC-JIR, serves on
the faculty of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship Program, is involved
in a number of leadership roles within the Reform movement, and
travels widely as a speaker and teacher in congregations throughout
the United States.
A graduate of the John Hopkins University in electrical engineering,
Rabbi Panken will complete his Ph.D. in Hebrew and Judaic Studies
at New York University this year. His current research involves
the change and growth of nascent Jewish law during the Rabbinic
Period, 70-500 CE. Other interests include aviation, the intersection
of science and religion, hiking, and travel. Prior to joining the
faculty and administration at HUC-JIR, Rabbi Panken served as Assistant
and Associate Rabbi of Congregation Rodeph Shalom in Manhattan.
Founded in 1875, HUC-JIR is the nation's oldest institution of
higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional
development center of Reform Judaism.
HUC-JIR educates men and women for service to American and world
Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and communal service professionals
and offers graduate and post-graduate degree programs for scholars
of all faiths.
With centers of learning in Cincinnati, Jerusalem, Los Angeles,
and New York, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise renowned library,
archive, and museum collections, biblical archeology excavations,
and academic publications.