April 17, 2024
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RKYHS Students Explore Creation in Interdisciplinary Program

Over the last two weeks, the RKYHS Tanach classes have begun studying the creation story at the beginning of Sefer Bereishit. As an outgrowth of this study, last Thursday students participated in an innovative, two-part interdisciplinary learning program.

First, student leaders led fellow students in text-based discussion groups exploring classical Jewish approaches to reconciling the Torah and modern scientific approaches to creation and evolution. The student leaders had prepared the sources by learning in small groups with Rabbi Tzvi Sinensky, director of Interdisciplinary Learning. Sources included citations from a broad array of sources, including midrashim, Abravanel, Rav Hirsch, Rav Kook, Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan and much more.

Next, students proceeded to the multi-purpose room for a panel discussion, moderated by Rabbi Sinensky, and led by Dr. Stein, Mrs. Mintz and Rabbi Mintz, respectively the Science, Tanach and Talmud department chairs. Student questions covered topics including the compatibility of Judaism with the big bang, evolution, and the possibility of life in other parts of the universe.

Students were inspired by their peers’ learning and teaching. They found that the highly engaging program reinforced their faith in Hashem, and helped them to appreciate the extent to which Jewish beliefs and modern science work hand-in-hand.

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