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Jewish Teachings on Resilience

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Hashivenu is a podcast about Jewish teachings and practice around resilience. Cultivating resilience in challenging times, both individually and collectively, is an essential path to personal renewal.



Photo of Rabbi Deborah Waxman

Hashivenu means “return us.” The “us” is the Jewish people, asking to be renewed. Seeking renewal, cultivating resilience — these are central concerns in Jewish thought and Jewish practice. Focusing on resilience is one way to think about how the Jewish people and the Jewish civilization we’ve created have survived for thousands of years. Again and again throughout history, Jews have experienced catastrophe — I’m talking about living through shattering challenges that destroyed our communities, that made us rethink our relationship to God, our relationship to other Jews, our relationship to other peoples and the world around us. And, again and again, we have transcended these catastrophes, we have breathed new life into the Jewish people and the Jewish civilization, we have found pathways to repair. From trauma, we have had to heal. We have done so by finding ways to cultivate resilience, both individually and collectively.