Talks & workshops


“Life of the Spirit: The Chalcolithic Culture 6,500 Years Ago in the Levant.” Presentation on spiritual life in the Chalcolithic period by Osnat Misch-Brandl, the curator of Chalcolithic and Canaanite Periods at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem. At Legion of Honor, 100 34th Ave., Lincoln Park, S.F. 2 p.m. Free.


“Masculinity and Femininity in Jewish Life Today.” Discussion with Rabbi Raleigh and Fruma Resnick. Part of Contra Costa Jewish Book and Arts Festival. At Reutlinger Community for Jewish Living, 4000 Camino Tassajara, Danville. 2:30 p.m. Free.


Lisa Brown and Nato Green

Bar mitzvah do-over. If you could go back in time and redo your bar or bat mitzvah, what would you do differently? At Reboot’s “ReBar: Revised Rites of Passage,” storytellers will share who they were then and what they would change about the big day, knowing what they know now. The lineup includes author-illustrator Lisa Brown, comedian Nato Green, soprano Heather Klein and Kinsey Sicks’ Reb Irwin Keller, with Rabbi David Kasher as emcee.

6:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 8 at Contemporary Jewish Museum, 736 Mission St., S.F. For 21 and older. Included with museum admission.

“Performance vs. Learning — The Costs of Overemphasizing Achievement.” Author Alfie Kohn discusses the educational dilemma of promoting achievement over learning. At Oshman Family JCC, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto. 7:30 p.m. $25-$30.

“Finding Pathways Forward Amid the Violence.” Dr. Stanley Wulf explores the causes and consequences of the recent Gaza-Israel war and what can be done to prevent future wars. At Temple Sinai, 2808 Summit St., Oakland. 7 p.m. Free.


“Exploring the World of Judaism: Blessings of a Skinned Knee.” Rabbi Joshua Fenton, associate director of Jewish LearningWorks, will discuss the importance of Jewish teachings in raising self-reliant children. At Congregation Kol Shofar, 215 Blackfield Drive, Tiburon. 9:30 a.m. Free.

“How Kabbalah Reimagines God.” Daniel C. Matt, Kabbalah scholar and Jewish studies professor at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, will discuss changing perceptions of God. At Kol Hadash bagel brunch at Albany Community Center, 1249 Marin Ave., Albany. 11 a.m. $10 brunch donation. (510) 982-1455

“Happiness.” Russian-language lecture by Israeli author and journalist Esther Segal on the meaning of happiness according to the Torah, Jewish religious writings and Russian literature. At Jewish Community Library, 1835 Ellis St., S.F. 6 p.m. $20. (408) 266-0026 or [email protected]


“Is It Good for the Jews? Black Power and the Jews.” S.F. State Jewish studies professor Marc Dollinger speaks about the relationship between American Jews and the black civil rights movement. At Oshman Family JCC, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto. 7:30 p.m. $15.

“Israel’s Future: An Insider Analysis of the Upcoming Israeli Elections.” Presentation by Einat Wilf, former member of the Israeli Knesset and adjunct fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. At Congregation Kol Shofar, 215 Blackfield Drive, Tiburon. 7 p.m. Free.


Speakers (from left) Sara Bamberger, Ken Goldberg and Sarah Lefton

‘Hacking Jewish tradition,’ In the computer world, “hacking” means subverting security to expose information that some believe should be shared. The secrets hidden within Jewish tradition and the value of keeping information open and available to all will be discussed at the Jewish Federation of the East Bay’s second “Ideas of Late” conversation, with Kevah founder Sara Bamberger, U.C. Berkeley professor Ken Goldberg, G-dcast producer Sarah Lefton and moderator Dan Schifrin.

7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 15 at Magnes, 2121 Allston Way, Berkeley. Free.