Wednesdays, March 13, 20, 27 and April 3, 10, 17, 2024
12- 1:30 p.m. EDT
Human beings are the only living creatures who use the future tense. By imagining a future that is different from the present, writes Rabbi Jonathan Sachs, this frees us to hope. God tells Moses that his name is “I will be what I will be” which suggests that Judaism is a religion of freedom with faith in the future tense. “To be a Jew is to be an agent of hope in the world serially threatened by despair,” Sachs writes. “Judaism is a sustained struggle … against the world that is, in the name of the world that could be, should be, but is not yet.” In this six-week immersion, we will read and discuss examples of hope expressed in writing through song, story, humor and metaphor. These pieces will stir you to think about where hope lives within you. You will be provided with writing prompts designed to help you conjure these as they relate to yourself, your loved ones, your community, the environment or world at large. And we will make time for sharing our individual spirit of hope with one another.
All sessions will be recorded and sent to participants. We encourage live attendance for you to get the most out of the experience.
Ellen Blum Barish
is the author of the spiritual memoir Seven Springs (Shanti Arts, 2021), the essay collection Views from the Home Office Window (Adams Street Publishing, 2007), and a contributor to Chicago Storytellers From Stage to Page (Chicago Story Press, 2020). You can find her personal essays in Tablet, Lilith, Brevity’s Blog, Full Grown People, Literary Mama, and The Chicago Tribune and hear them on Chicago Public Radio. She founded the literary publication Thread, which earned four notables in Best American Essays. Ellen has taught writing at Northwestern University, Chicago-area synagogues, and writer’s studios, including Story Studio Chicago and Lighthouse Lit Fest. She works privately with writers on essay collections and memoir.