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Until further notice, all services will be live-streamed through Zoom and/or Facebook Live. Please see our EVENTS page for more details.

Ben Franklin Meets Pirkei Avot

Ben Franklin Meets Pirkei Avot -
A Discussion and Debate 

Sundays at 10am

March 7, March 21 and April 4, 2021 

*Register once for the series and receive access to all dates.

Access information will be sent to your email each Thursday at 5pm before the next Sunday's program. 

Sessions for Adult Learners who like to
Discuss and Connect

Ben Franklin Meets Pirkei Avot

This program is an invitation to engage, discuss and debate in a powerful dialogue about Benjamin Franklin’s “13 virtues” alongside selected teachings from Pirkei Avot (Ethics of the Sages) that explore similar Jewish and American values.

This is a three week continuing education journey with Rabbi Michael Torop.


Examples of Values we will discuss:
the nature of justice
the importance of sincerity
the impact of humility

Ben Franklin and rabbi shared goal: strive for “moral perfection,” but also understand human limitations.

More extended Background Explanation
Ben Franklin, one of the founding fathers of our nation, was an inventor, writer and signer of the Declaration of Independence. He also believed in the possibility of moral perfection, and in pursuit of that goal, he identified 13 specific virtues, which became the focus of a unique mission. Franklin believed that by practicing temperance, silence, order, resolution, frugality, industry, sincerity, justice, moderation, cleanliness, tranquility, chastity and humility, he could accomplish a life without “fault.”
A millennia and a half before Franklin’s gathering first met, a group of rabbinic scholars in Israel fashioned a similar roadmap to living a moral life. It was known as Pirkei Avot (Ethics of the Sages).  In this ancient Jewish text, the rabbis highlighted specific behaviors – often quite similar to Franklin’s virtues— that would help to put a person on the moral path in life.

List of Ben Franklin Virtues:


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Sat, January 16 2021 3 Sh'vat 5781