New Online Effort Launched to Reignite Global Jewish Learning

Jews unite to tackle good and evil, heaven and hell, sex and relationships, and more online in advance of historic Talmud translation and Global Day of Jewish Learning

Jun 15, 2010, 09:36 ET from Aleph Society

NEW YORK, June 15 /PRNewswire/ -- To celebrate the culmination of Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz's audacious 45-year quest to translate the Talmud and unlock its wisdom for modern Jews, today the Aleph Society launched a new online campaign to spark a love for Jewish learning.  The effort is part of the Global Day of Jewish Learning project supported by more than two dozen national and international groups representing every movement within Judaism.

The website will engage everyone from the most secular "cultural" Jews to the most religiously observant Jews in a provocative global dialogue about Judaism's take on "big questions" like good and evil, heaven and hell, sex and relationships, and more.  In addition to uniting Jews over the coming months to wrestle with important moral questions online, communities around the world will host Talmud study events on Nov. 7, which organizers have dubbed the Global Day of Jewish Learning.  The date was selected to coincide with Rabbi Steinsaltz's completion of the 45th and final volume of his translation and commentary on the Talmud, a monumental task he began in 1965, at age 27.

"The Talmud belongs to all Jews, and not just a special sect or elite group," said Rabbi Steinsaltz.  "Through the power of these translations and the power of modern technology, we are awakening Jews to their shared heritage."

Organizers hope Jews of every background will visit, explore what the site has to offer, and sign up to be part of this unique global conversation about the Talmudic take on contemporary issues.

A uniquely unifying endeavor, the effort counts among its supporting partners the governing bodies, leadership, and ordaining institutions of the Reform, Conservative, and Orthodox movements of Judaism, as well as the leadership of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association.  

More than 150 communities around the world have already registered to convene Global Day of Jewish Learning programs on Nov. 7, representing Jews throughout the United States, Canada, Israel, and Europe, as well as India, Australia, Turkey, and South America.  More than 50 communities in the former Soviet Union have already registered to participate, engaging Jews in Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, and Kyrgyzstan.

Along with the Aleph Society, organizing partners of the Global Day of Jewish Learning include: the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee; the Jewish Community Center Association; Jewish Education Service of North America; Jewish Federations of North America; Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life; and the Shefa Institute.  Visit for the full list of partners.

Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz is a distinguished scholar, teacher, mystic, and social critic.  He has written some 60 books and hundreds of articles on the Talmud, Kabbalah and Chasidut.  His works have been translated into English, Russian, French, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish, Italian, Chinese and Japanese.

The Aleph Society was established in 1988 to support Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz's mission to make the Talmud and other sources of Jewish knowledge accessible to all Jews.  The organization also represents the central branch of his schools and educational centers throughout the world.  The Aleph Society's projects provide all Jews direct access to Rabbi Steinsaltz's teachings, and as a result, tens of thousands of Jews are learning what it means to be Jewish, identifying with their people and obtaining full access to the richness of their heritage.

For more information, visit

SOURCE Aleph Society