May 30, 2024
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May 30, 2024
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SAR HS Introduces Theme Of Koach Hadibur

At SAR High School, the theme for the year is Koach Hadibur, or the power of speech. In exploring this theme, students and faculty will join together to consider the power of speech and how words create worlds, and are tools that construct basic human experience and shape the course of history.

“The story we tell as a people shapes our collective Jewish identity, and our spiritual lives are woven by words of Torah, prayer and blessings,” explained Shuli Taubes, director of Educational Programming. “But words can also destroy worlds and cause great harm. Through a variety of programming over the course of the year, our students will explore the importance of communication through civil discourse, social accountability and spiritual expression.”

The opening theme program, which took place on Tzom Gedalia, was dedicated to the memory of JJ Greenberg, z”l, son of the school’s founders, Rabbi Yitz and Blu Greenberg. As Blu explained in her opening remarks, “Speech is probably more powerful than our other senses combined. We know from life the power of speech: You can kill a person with bad speech, listening to gossip is forbidden, speech gives you the power to bear your soul, express faith, communicate in relationships and speak words of Torah and tefillah. You can be a bystander by not exercising speech or not be one if you choose to speak up. You can use speech to create friendships and experience catharsis.” She admitted that she didn’t realize how essential speech was in JJ’s life until after he passed. He used words to treat people respectfully and always listened to others when they spoke.

After hearing from Rabbi Yitz and Blu, the Theme Council presidents, Alex Wolf and Abigail Chill, introduced a powerful video by stressing that we should be careful about things we say as our words have a lot more impact than we think. The video honed in on this point both with examples from history and with personal vignettes shared by students and faculty members.

After the introduction of the theme, students broke out into smaller groups to learn various Torah sources about the power of speech. The students will continue to explore these ideas as they delve deeper into the study of the power of speech throughout the school year.

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