SHJC talk to explore Mussar approach to ethics

Nan Rubin

The Secular Humanist Jewish Circle will sponsor a lecture by Nan Rubin on “Mussar, an Ethical Approach to Daily Life” on Saturday, Nov. 19, from 1:30 to 4 p.m. at the Dusenberry-River Library, 5605 East River Road (Craycroft and River).

Rubin, a licensed clinical social worker, has been engaged in the study and daily practice of Mussar for several years and currently leads one of two Mussar groups at Congregation M’kor Hayim.

Rooted in ancient Jewish texts, the Mussar movement developed in 19th century Eastern Europe, particularly among Orthodox Lithuanian Jews. It has been made more accessible to Jews of all denominations by Alan Morinis, author of “Climbing Jacob’s Ladder” and “Everyday Holiness: The Jewish Spiritual Path of Mussar,” and a founder of the Mussar Institute. By studying certain character traits known as middot, such as patience, humility, generosity, honor and simplicity, Mussar practitioners believe it is possible to refine how we interact with others and to consciously bring more of these positive qualities into the world.

The event is free and open to the public. There will be a secular celebration of the Jewish Sabbath. Participants are asked to bring snacks and appetizers to share. RSVP to Susan at srubinaz@comcast.net or 577-7718.