2011 Conference
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Ben Dreyfus


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Ben Dreyfus is a Ph.D. student in physics education research at the University of Maryland. He was a founder of Kol Zimrah, an independent minyan in Manhattan, and is now an organizer of Segulah, an independent minyan on the DC/Maryland border. He blogs at Mah Rabu (mahrabu.blogspot.com) and Jewschool (www.jewschool.com).

Hilchot Pluralism

Theory and Practice of Pluralistic Jewish Communities

College/University Student Recommended, Identity & Responsibility

Every community has some areas on which it takes a firm stand, and other issues on which it seeks to be pluralistic, accommodating multiple practices and identities. What does it mean to be pluralistic, and how do we implement this in our communities? When is a pluralistic solution impossible or undesirable? We will explore the theory of Jewish pluralism, and share pluralistic practices developed in our communities.

Musical Mincha/Ma'ariv

Afternoon/Evening Service

Interactive, Ritual, Prayer & Spirituality

This service includes the full mincha and ma'ariv liturgy, and features eclectic melodies and exuberant harmonies accompanied by acoustic guitar and percussion. Bring your favorite siddur and your voice.

Kiddushin by Document

Ben Dreyfus, Elizabeth Richman

Ritual, Prayer & Spirituality, Text & Thought

The Mishnah specifies three different methods for effecting kiddushin (betrothal), the first part of the marriage process. The most common method in the present time is kesef, a ring or other object of value. At our wedding in 2009, we revived another of the classic methods of kiddushin: sh'tar (document). In this session, we'll explain how and why we used this rabbinic procedure to create kiddushin that is egalitarian and mutual.


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