THE USES OF DESIRE
Recorded at Limmud Festival 2020
We often learn that during the High Holidays, Hashem beseeches us to return to righteousness. No matter how devious our past actions, every act of repentance, prayer, and charity (teshuvah, tefilah, tzedakah) is welcomed with open arms.
Yet even the Jewish tradition sometimes questions or subverts this narrative. What if sin itself could actually open up a path towards the divine? Could deviousness uncover new aspects of our relationship with Hashem?
Weaving insights from eighteenth-century hasidic masters and the contemporary American poet and novelist Jamie Quatro, Naftali Brawer delves into this fascinating topic in this session, presented at Limmud Festival 2020.
Questions for discussion:
- Does Hashem expect us to transgress commandments?
- Should we repel illicit desires? Should we indulge them?
- Have you ever experienced a religious awakening while breaking established conventions or rules?