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Mental Health Ushpezin

Much like we invite ushpezin into our sukkot, what qualities or practices would you like to invite into your life in the new year? Maybe you want to focus inwardly on forming new self-care and gratitude practices. Or, maybe you want to focus outwardly and commit to reaching out to friends and family more often? You can choose qualities or practices that feel big or small to you — even small steps can make a big impact on our mental wellbeing.

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Keeping it Together

By Max Hollander | In the desert, there is only anxiety, but the holiday of Sukkot asks us to embrace that desert experience because without it we wouldn’t get anywhere. We don’t just read about it; we live it, residing in the sukkah for an entire week. And, in doing so, we learn to accept the reality that we are allowed to shake or stumble on our journeys and shouldn’t be ashamed of that.

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#QuietingTheSilence: An Open Conversation About Suicide

September is both National Suicide Prevention Month and the Jewish High Holiday season, a time where we are thinking about how to improve and nurture our own lives and the lives of the people around us. Hear the moving stories of a rabbi, a Jewish educator, and a mental health professional whose families have experienced suicide and suicidal ideation. Featuring: Rabbi David Kirshner, Mel Berwin, Ruby Falk.

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Simchat Torah and Recovery Spiral

Judaism encourages us to question, to learn and to grow; it’s one of the unique and valued traditions of our religion. While we as Jews do this all year round, it is especially emphasized during the holidays at the beginning of a new year. Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur offer us a chance to focus on self-reflection and improvement. Simchat Torah presents a different opportunity to celebrate and begin a fresh start to our Jewish growth and learning.

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God has Made Laughter for Me

By Ze’ev Korn, LCSW, MSW, EdM | On Rosh Hashanah, Jews around the world will read the same section of the Torah. It is the story of the birth of Isaac, or Yitzhak in Hebrew, whose name means laughter. What a way to begin the new year, with the gift of laughter and humor being brought into the world. While everyone has experienced the pleasure of laughing, I (and I imagine others) have also known the experience of losing one’s sense of humor.

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T’Shuva Le’Tevah – A Return to Nature

By Tori Greene | The holiday of Sukkot is a time when we as Jews from all around the world take our indoor lives outdoors as we build temporary dwellings — called sukkot — to eat, hang out and even sleep in. After spending about a month and a half from Elul to Yom Kippur, delving inward and focusing on the self, Sukkot pulls us outward.​ It requires us to interact with community and nature in a way that can be rejuvenating for the soul and, potentially, for the mind.

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