Greetings from Montreal. I’m here to debut Positive Judaism at the International Positive Psychology Association annual conference. I’m also happy to announce the launch of the website that will house this work – www.positive-judaism.org.
The philosophy and practice of Positive Judaism that we have been grooming together in our school and our congregation is finding traction in a related field. It makes sense. Positive Psychology is focused on developing people’s strengths and identifying ways to advance humanity. The same is true for Judaism.
At one of the plenary sessions, Dr. Martin Seligman, the founder of Positive Psychology was asked by an attendee, “what is the role that Positive Psychology is going to have in politics and religion?” He replied, “there is someone here who I believe can answer this question better than I. Is Rabbi Darren Levine in the room?” I replied, “there are millions of Americans in the pews each weekend – at synagogues, churches, and mosques. Could you imagine if these congregants were inspired each week with a positive message about their well-being and societal advancement – on a broad scale?” That was fun.
I want you to meet Molly Dahl with me in the picture. She’s a star who has a HUGE vision for Positive Education for kids and youth and is creating materials that we will use at in our Hebrew School to help our children identify their strengths, notice them in others, and to learn how to instinctively act from their signature strength profile. I’m so excited to see where this can go in Jewish education.
I hope you’re having a great summer holiday – I miss seeing you but I’m glad we’re connected online. Please let me know your reactions to positive-judaism.org which is a milestone for all of us. As always, I’m grateful to each of you for nourishing our vision for Jewish life at Tamid and sharing it widely.