Highlighting: “The 40 Day Challenge” by Rabbi Mark Wildes. Kodesh Press. 2021. English. 186 pages.
(Courtesy of Kodesh Press) Kodesh Press is pleased to announce the release of “The 40-Day Challenge, Daily Jewish Insights to Prepare for the High Holidays” by Rabbi Mark N. Wildes.
After synagogues were closed due to COVID-19, and after recent antisemitic attacks on the streets of New York and other American cities, there is more focus on the upcoming holidays than ever before. Rabbi Mark N. Wildes, founder and director of Manhattan Jewish Experience (MJE), will soon release “The 40-Day Challenge” to spiritually prepare people for the High Holidays. Each chapter is a daily spiritual lesson, culminating with Yom Kippur, the most religiously significant day on the Jewish calendar. It draws on ancient and classical sources like the Talmud and Maimonides, historical lessons from Abraham Lincoln, Alfred Nobel, and the Holocaust, as well as discussions of contemporary cultural icons like Super Bowl Champion Tom Brady and The Bachelorette winner Zac Clark.
“I have always believed that when you show people the beauty and wisdom of Torah, they will run to it. People are looking to connect to something beyond the daily grind, something to uplift them, especially in times of crisis,” Wildes said. “You don’t have to push people. You just have to share the light of Torah and show how it is relevant to everyone’s life, no matter what challenges we all face.”
Alec Goldstein, founder of Kodesh Press, said, “Rabbi Wildes has dedicated his life to transforming the lives of young professionals where they are—in the heart of Manhattan—and helps connect them to their heritage, so given the opportunity to work with him, I jumped at the chance. “The 40 Day Challenge” represents Rabbi Wildes at his finest: The daily entries are accessible, informative and humorous. Each short entry is a simple step to emotional and spiritual growth—something so many people are looking for, regardless of their level of observance.”
The book offers numerous elements of introspection, including strategies to overcome anger, how to judge others favorably, and how to develop a deeper sense of gratitude for fellow human beings and for God.
More than 340 marriages have been made through MJE, which offers weekly classes and beginners’ services, hosts Shabbat dinners, leads trips to Israel and more. This is Rabbi Wildes’ second book. His first book, “Beyond the Instant: Jewish Wisdom for Lasting Happiness in a Fast-Paced Social Media World,” warns against a reliance on technology that risks dehumanizing our interpersonal relationships and presents 10 different ideas from the Torah on achieving long-term happiness.