Intro to Judaism 2014

As part of my conversion process, I will be taking an Introduction to Judaism class.  Yesterday I recieved the syllabus for the class.  The class is 16 weeks in length and is basically just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the entire process.  The class is taught one night a week and is put on by multiple rabbis from the local Reform, Conservative, and Hillel organizations.

I look forward to sharing things that I learn and observe during the time that I am in the class.  I know that many of you may not wish to know about it or hear about it or think it is not legit, but that is ok.  If we all can be respectful of each others opinions and stages of personal spiritual life we will live in a better world.

Course Syllabus:

  1. Introduction and Core Beliefs of Judaism – January 16
  2. Practice and Observance at Home and in the Synagogue – January 23
  3. The Shabbat – January 30
  4. Jewish Liturgy – February 6
  5. Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur – February 13
  6. Holidays and Festivals – Pilgrimage Festivals: Passover, Sukkot, Shavuot – February 20
  7. Jewish Holidays and Festivals – Minor Holidays – Hanukkah, Tu B’shvat, Purim, Tisha B’Av
  8. Jewish Life Cycle, Part I – Birth, Bar/Bat Mitzvah, Confirmation, and New Rituals – March 6
  9. Jewish Life Cycle, Part II – Marriage, Divorce and Death – March 13
  10. History, Part I – Israelites, Judaism and Jews in the Expanding World – March 27
  11. History, Part II – Medieval – 1492 – Enlightenment and Beginnings of Modern Jewish Thought – April 3
  12. History, Part III – Holocaust, Israel & Zionism – April 10
  13. History, Part IV – The American Jewish History: Reading – April 24
  14. Getting back to God – Developing a personal theology – May 1
  15. Judaism and Modern Questions – May 8
  16. Siyyum – A Commencement — Living a Jewish Life: What’s Next?, accompanied by Guided Discussion on Conversion May 15

I am going to miss one of the class nights because I will be in Israel from February 5th to February 11th, so during that week I will hopefully be able to blog about something interesting or thought provoking that is going on around me while in Israel.  I could always stop by the Times of Israel offices, I bet!



More of Ryan’s blogging about his journey into Judaism can be found at his blog “Newb Jew

About the Author
Ryan Fagan is originally from Southwest Florida, and currently lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota where he is employed in the financial sector and is active at Shir Tikvah, his Reform shul. He recently converted to Judaism after being raised in a Catholic household. He also goes by his Hebrew name, Aviv.