Middot: Using Our Character Strengths Through Tough Times with Fran Lande

Thursdays  7 p.m.-8 p.m. on Zoom

Participants will continue to explore character strengths and middot as we navigate our journey through daily life.  By accessing our strengths, we are able to enhance our daily living and journey.  Each session will include a study of a Jewish text, value and/or concept.  Come participate in a thoughtful and intriguing discussion.

In the Middle Ages, Rabbi Yehudah Loeb of Prague (d. 1609) built a golem, a monster-like figure, to protect the Jewish community. Rabbi Israel Salanter (d. 1883) remarked, “How wonderful! But how much more wonderful is it to transform a corporeal human being into a mensch (a truly good person)!”

Rabbi Salanter recognizes that quite often, we are safer when we build up our capacity for goodness, caring, and love. Judaism has always encouraged us to strive to become a mensch, by building up our character. This has been the goal of the study of middot, character strengths. 

This is also the goal of the modern positive psychology movement. Researchers have defined character strengths as positive, trait-like capacities for thinking, feeling, and behaving in ways that benefit oneself and others. The development of one’s character strengths shows strong correlations with components related to well-being such as self-acceptance, purpose, mastery and mental health.

The Values in Action Institute on Character has identified six categories of human character: wisdom, courage, humanity, justice, temperance and transcendence. Each of the 24 character strengths they have identified fall into one of these categories. Click here to visit the Values in Action website page on the 24 character strengths.

It’s interesting, relevant, and fun!

If you are joining us for the first time, please contact president@CongregationAmHayam.com to receive the link to join a Zoom class. Visitors are invited and appreciated!