Mussar is an inspiring approach to everyday living. This ethical and spiritual practice invites you to study the Jewish perspectives on character traits (middot) such as patience, forgiveness, generosity and anger (to name a few). Through self-reflection, personal journaling, and focused exercises, you will be able to set your own curriculum regarding how to use these traits in your lives. Mussar’s purpose is to help you overcome the obstacles to inner wholeness, holiness, and closeness to God.
The practice of Mussar is accessible to all people, regardless of age, gender, religious affiliation or level of Jewish knowledge. The only criteria for participation are that you have had some experience of the human condition and that you have a desire to grow spiritually.
The first step on the path of Mussar is to realize that our essence is the soul and that all aspects of ego and personality flow from that essence. At its core, the soul is pure, but habits, tendencies and imbalances often obscure some of that inner light.
The lessons of Mussar are all intended to help us correct whatever shortcomings may be preventing the light of our soul from shining through.
Please contact me if you are interested in individual Mussar study or consultation, or to participate in a Mussar group.
For further information about Mussar, go to website of The Mussar Institute: www.mussarinstitute.org.
Testimonial: I have prided myself on not being religious so it was a surprise when I found myself engaged in the daily practice of Mussar and noticing the not-so-subtle behavioral changes that have made me a better person. They seemed to happen effortlessly. I was not “trying to change”–I was “practicing” the middah of the week. The support for doing the daily practice that I got from Nancy’s group was a great boon, and as a complete bonus, brought me the friendship of many wonderful people similarly engaged.
-R. N., MD