JTalk – Why do certain debate trigger such intense responses?

JTalk is an informal discussion directly after the Saturday Shabbat services, starting at 11.15am in the Board Room in the Slome Annexe and lasting about an hour. All welcome. This week and next week we will feature two discussions about the art of listening to other people.

This week Liebe Kellen will broach the subject ofWhy do certain kinds of debate – over issues like racism, gay rights, transgender or Zionism – trigger such intense responses in people?” Much of it has to do with the information we have absorbed over our lives from a variety of sources. These determine our own comfort zones, which we fear having challenged. Liebe Kellen, who aims to complete her PhD in 2018, discusses the fascinating “narrative unconscious” theories of psychologist Mark Freeman.

6 August – Tessa Abramovitz will discuss Learning to listen to one another”. Tessa is a teacher and counsellor who has worked in South Africa and abroad. Her passion is teaching people to listen effectively to each other. She will present on building listening circles of support that can lead to change, in the face of our fears, tears, anger and anxiety. Come prepared to listen and be listened to.

13August – Prof. Barry Dwolatsky – “A hi-tech approach to Tikun Olam – Can hi-tech help address South Africa’s social problems?” Professor Dwolatsky, one of South Africa’s leading IT personalities, will talk about his ambitious Wits University project to create a digital innovation precinct up the road from us in Braamfontein, which aims to grow skills among our youth, promote entrepreneurship, create jobs and rejuvenate Johannesburg’s inner city.


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