Jerusalem Learning

Jerusalem Learning

Essentials of Jewish Living

I was born Jewish, but never really had the opportunity to learn what Judaism is all about. Now that I find myself in Jerusalem, I would like to attend an organized seminar that will teach me the fundamentals. Who should I contact?



The world-renowned Aish HaTorah offers a program that may appeal to you. It teaches the “Essentials” of positive Jewish living. It answers questions such as – “Why is it important to be Jewish?” “Why not intermarry?”, and “What does it all mean?”

The program, called “Essentials” for men and “JEWEL” for women, runs for four weeks and is held every month of the year. It includes touring the land of Israel. Even if you cannot attend the entire session, it’s possible to catch at least a class or two. Drop by their office to pick up a curriculum.

One part of the program that I would recommend is the Discovery program. It answers the “why’s” of being Jewish. For more details about Discovery, read the Question on “Science, Bible Codes & Judaism” above. It is usually held every Sunday. Anyone can attend. Aish HaTorah World Headquarters is in the Old City of Jerusalem. It is about a 2-minute walk from the Western Wall.

There are, as well, many other exciting and welcoming programs on the fundamentals of Jewish living. Each program has its own forté. See the section on Men’s or Women’s Learning programs below to find one that appeals to you.

To learn more about Essentials or Discovery contact Aish HaTorah, 70 Misgav Ladach St, Jewish Quarter, POB 14149, Jerusalem, 91141, Israel, email:,,,
Phone: (02) 627-2355, Fax: (02) 627-7742

A Friend to Learn With

I would like to learn about my Jewish heritage. I do have some background – my family does light candles on Hanukkah – but I would like to understand why and how Judaism fits into my life. I’ve felt compelled many times to learn more — since, after all, I came into this life Jewish — but I’ve been reluctant to attend a seminar. I desired something more personal. Can you suggest a program that allows me to learn with somebody one-to-one?

The Heritage House offers a free learning program called “Study with a Buddy” that is particularly suited to what you are looking for. Usually, you are referred to a friendly someone who is knowledgeable in the subject you are interested in. You can learn about any Jewish subject – for example, Hebrew, the Jewish Holidays, business or medical ethics, mysticism. One can even learn the Talmud one-on-one in-person, by phone or on-line. Times are flexible and you can ask all the questions you wish.

Contact Heritage House at 02-627-1916, 90 Chabad Street, Old City (office) 9am-4:45 pm. Men’s Hostel, 2 Or HaChaim Street, Old City, tel: 02 627 2224; Women’s Hostel, 7 Hamalach Street, Old City, tel: 02 628 1820. Buses: 1,2,3,6,19,20,30,38. Fax: 02-628-8302, email; , website: Study with a buddy




Spare time and a Walkman

I’d love to listen to Jewish Audio in my spare time. Where can I acquire some mp3?


Aish HaTorah and Ohr Somayach both have mp3 libraries (for use or purchase) that will give new life to your phone and revitalize your own life. General topics, presented by professional speakers, include Introduction to Judaism, Jewish history, Jewish thought, biographies, ethics, contemporary issues, Torah, prayer, and personal issues such as maintaining harmony at home, finding the right match, how to become a better person, and raising children.

You can either purchase these tapes or borrow them. Aish HaTorah has an Audio Tape Library in the Old City which you can reach at (02)-628-5666. Contact the Ohr Somayach International Audio Library for their cassettes, at POB 18103, Jerusalem 91180 Israel, Fax: 972-2-581-2890, Email:,

If you are interested in Jewish music, there are several music stores on or near Malkhei Yisrael Street in the Geula neighborhood. Jewish Music Stream is an online Jewish Radio Station

Read All About It

I have many questions about Judaism. I’ve done some reading on the topic that interest me, but at times I have particular questions that the books don’t address. Whom can I ask?


You can ask your local Orthodox rabbi or contact the renowned Ohr Somayach institution via e-mail .

Ohr Somayach publishes a well-written weekly newsletter called OHRNET. The Torah newsletter can also be found on the Internet. It has a section called “Ask the Rabbi.” You can ask pointed questions on all Jewish Subjects, and be answered by their staff of highly competent Rabbis. OHRNET is available from several sources:

Via Internet e-mail: write to for information.

World wide web address:

Submit your questions to ASK THE RABBI at or E-Mail — set subject to “ASK THE RABBI.”

To find a Rabbi that can answer your questions, in the US, contact Agudath Israel of America – 1-212-797-9000.

Torah & Fun

Where can I learn about the weekly Torah reading?


OHRNET, the Torah Newsletter mentioned above, offers well-written commentaries in English on the weekly Torah reading. It also has questions and answers on the weekly Torah reading and general questions from readers.

I’d Like to Learn More About My Heritage

Can you suggest any good Jewish learning programs for men?


There are several excellent programs that I would recommend. They allow you to experience the wealth of Judaism and Torah first-hand. Their programs explore a wide range of topics and appeal to a wide spectrum of people – from students to employees, executives to scientists. Many provide an intellectual approach to understanding Judaism. They encourage questions and answer them patiently and thoroughly. Some even allow you to earn University credits. Today it is a popular thing to take a month or a year off to learn about your roots. Listed below are some courses you may be interested in. You can even grab a class or two while you are here, to just learn more or to sample the program. (In other countries see World Jewish Information section on p. 15)

Jerusalem Fellowships

– is a young leadership program (17-35) with tours, meetings with political leaders, classes on Judaism and Israel. Contact Aish HaTorah, 70 Misgav Ladach, P.O.B. 14149, Jewish Quarter, Jerusalem 91141 Israel, Old City, Jerusalem, 91141, Phone: 02-628-3879, Fax: 02-626-4050, e-mail:

Jewish Learning Exchange

– is a young leadership program for university students, professionals, and business executives – men between the ages of 18-30. It is a combination of an introductory study of the majesty of our Jewish heritage., touring and meetings with political leaders. Contact Ohr Somayach International, 22 Shimon Hatzadik Street, Maalot Daphna, POB 18103, Jerusalem 91180, Israel, Bus: 22, Tel: 02-581-0315 Fax: 972-2-581-2890 , email:

Yeshivat Hakotel
– is a Jewish learning institution located in the Old City. It has many Jewish learning programs for young men of all backgrounds. Contact Yeshivat Hakotel, P.O.B. 603, Jerusalem 91006, Bus: 1, 2, 38, Phone: 02-628-8175, 628-8833, Fax: 02-627-1180, Email:

Derech Institute for Torah Studies

– is a post- high school program for self-sufficiency in Jewish learning for men between the ages of 18-30 Contact Ohr Somayach International, 22 Shimon Hatzadik Street, Maalot Daphna, POB 18103, Jerusalem 91180, Israel, Bus: 22, Tel: 02-581-0315 Fax: 972-2-581-2890 Email:

Aish HaTorah Beis Medrash Program

– teaches Talmud in depth and in breadth, Chumash (The Five Books of the Bible), ethics, and Jewish outlook, and a course in Jewish law to men interested in Yeshiva learning. Contact Yeshivat Aish HaTorah, One Western Wall Plaza, POB 14149, Old City, Jerusalem, 91141, Phone: (972-2) 628-5666, Fax: (972-2) 627-3172, Email:

Executive Learning Center

teaches mature professionals and couples who are either visiting or living in Jerusalem. The program offers classes on Bible, Jewish history, philosophy, ethics, and Hebrew, as well as contemporary issues such as the afterlife, love and marriage, Creation and science, and the Holocaust. Guided touring throughout Israel. Baby-sitting and business
services are available. ELC also presents contemporary legal and medical ethical issues, analyzed in a traditional Jewish framework. Offers continuing legal education credits to lawyers and Level-1 credits to doctors. Contact: Aish HaTorah’s Executive Learning Center, One Western Wall Plaza, POB 14149, Old City, Jerusalem 91141, Phone: (02) 628-5666, ext. 252, Fax: (02) 627-3172, Email:

Essentials – Men’s Introductory Program –

See The Essentials of Jewish Living section above. Contact Aish HaTorah, One Western Wall Plaza, P.O.B. 14149, Jewish Quarter, Jerusalem 91141 Israel, Tel: (972-2) 628-5666 ext. 241, Fax: (972-2) 627-3172 E-mail:

Dvar Yerushalayim – Academy of Jewish Studies

– introduces the basic principles of Judaism and Torah study to young (and young at heart) men with little or no Torah education. For Beginners to Advanced Students. Teaches Chumash, Nach, Mishnah, Talmud, Philosophy, Ethics, Torah and Science, Prayer, Introduction to Mitzvot, Hebrew, Laws and Customs. Offers courses in English, Hebrew, Russian, French, Spanish. Includes touring, sports and guest speakers.


Contact Dvar Yerushalayim, Katzenellenbogen 53, POB 34580, Har Nof, Jerusalem 91344, Phone: Office: 02-652-2817, Fax: 652-2827, US Phone: (718) 305-1927, E-mail:, Homepage:

Darche Noam / Shappel’s

is for Jewishly committed adults interested in making Judaism the center of their lives, whether they go into business, the professions, Jewish education, or the rabbinate. Contact Yeshiva Darche Noam, David Shapell College of Jewish Studies, P.O. Box 35209, Beit Hakerem 5, Beit Hakerem, Jerusalem, 91351, Phone: 02-651-1178, Fax: 02-652-0801, e-mail:, Homepage:

Yeshivas Ohr Avraham was established in 2002 with the endorsement of Gedolei Torah and the emphatic encouragement of the leaders of the Kiruv world.

The Yeshiva was founded with the vision to build true Bnei Torah, as well as accepting the crucial challenge of preparing and molding the future leaders of the Jewish people. With these aims in mind, three fundamental components were identified as necessary for fulfilling this vision:

Excellence in Torah learning skills,
Integrating Torah life skills,
A sense of responsibility for the Jewish people

Women’s Programs

Are there any programs that are designed
especially for women? Where can I learn more?


Yes. Below is a selection of programs that can help you grow intellectually, develop spiritually, make friends who are on a similar search, and gain appreciation of Torah and Mitzvoth and the land of Israel. Some offer College credits. Most programs allow you to take individual classes without having to sign up for the entire program. If you just want to try it out to see if it suits you, now’s a great time.

Neve Yerushalayim
College for Women is for women who want to discover themselves and their Heritage It is designed for all women, from those who have little or no background in Judaism to those who are advanced. Course languages include English, French, or Hebrew. Programs explore: questions such as: Do I need religion to be a good person? What is unique about being Jewish? Does G-d exist? How do I approach relationships, love and marriage? What is my connection to the land of Israel? How can I live my life to the fullest? The program includes touring and other social
activities. Contact Neve Yerushalayim, 1 Rechov Bet Yitzchak, P.O.B. 43016, Har Nof, Jerusalem, Office: 02-651-9276, Fax: 02-651-9376, email:, US Office: 25 Broadway, Suite 403, New York, NY
10004, Tel.: (212) 422-1110 Fax: (212) 785-0898, email:, Homepage:

The Executive Women’s Learning Program

is for women who have been successful in their professional lives, are well educated and experienced, yet are relative beginners in the realm of Torah learning. Courses cover Jewish history, philosophy, halacha (Jewish Law), and beginning ulpan, to in-depth textual analysis of Chumash and Mussar texts. Contact Executive Women’s Learning Program, c/o Aish HaTorah, POB 14149, Jerusalem, 91141, Israel, email:, Phone:
972-2-628-5666, Fax: 972-2-627-3172

JEWEL · Jewish Women’s Education League

– is for young, intelligent women, eager to find the answers to life’s deepest questions, who want to challenge, be challenged and explore their Jewish identity in Jerusalem. Covers Self Development, Prayer, Chumash, Hebrew Ulpan, Women’s Issues, Jewish Ethics, Mysticism, Textual Skills, Jewish Daily Living, Philosophy, Jewish History, Holidays, and more… Contact THE JEWEL CENTER, 6 Mevo Timna St., entrance 2, Apt. 9, Ramat Eshkol, 97752, Jerusalem, Israel 02-582-5323 Fax: 02-532-5437 E-mail:

EYHAT Women’s College of Jewish Studies (Aish Hatorah Women’s Division
– welcomes Jewish women to a friendly environment in which to learn how to become the best woman one can be. EYHAT offers Jewish courses, personal attention and guidance to help you to get to know yourself and live a meaningful life. Classes are taught on Jewish texts, philosophy and history. They also offer volunteer, Shabbat, touring and sports programs. Contact Rebbetzin Denah Weinberg, Dean, Rechov Imrei Bina, 22, Kiryat Sanz, Jerusalem, 91141, 02-538-2522 (office) Fax: 537-4163, e-mail:, Has branches in NY, LA, Toronto and Miami Beach, St. Louis, London. Summer program also offered.

She’arim College of Jewish Studies for Women

(Ages 20+) Full or part-time Torah study on three levels (Beginners to Advanced) in a warm atmosphere conductive to personal and religious growth, as well as the acquisition of text study skills. Chumash, Navi, Halacha (Law), Jewish Thought and Ethics. Contact: Mrs. Miriam Shaul, She’arim College of Jewish Studies for Women, 23/4 Rechov Agassi, Har Nof, Jerusalem, Israel, Buses #11 or #15 to 56 Katzenellenbogen, Tel: 02-651-4240, Fax: 02-651-8370, E-mail:, Homepage:

Midreshet Rachel College of Jewish Studies for Women –
offers various programs to help one independently analyze the wealth of Jewish texts. They help one to learn to balance the competing demands of family, Jewish studies and career. Their frequent in-depth seminars explore contemporary issues, including the Jewish approach to marriage, intermarriage, feminism and mysticism. They also offer communal service and Israel touring-and- learning programs. Contact them at 116/8 Rechov Givat Shaul in Givat Shaul, Jerusalem, 91351. Office: 02-654-0622. Fax/Phone: 02-651-9183. Email:


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