The Sages
“Moshe received the Torah from Sinai, and entrusted it to Y’hoshu’a who bequeathed it to the Sages…”
Pirkei Avot 1:1

As the smoke cleared from the destruction of the first beit hamikdash (temple), the Jewish people began to return to rebuild their shattered lives. But even more miraculous than the successful physical rebuilding was the spiritual one.

Led by the incomparable Ezra the Scribe, the spiritual world of the Jewish people was reconstructed brick by brick by the most gifted group of spiritual leaders we have ever possessed. We know them as Chazal – Our Sages, of blessed memory.

Who were they? Far from being mere passive transmitters of the tradition, for close on 800 years they were bold and passionate trailblazers who had to contend with powerful political adversaries and difficult internal threats while at the same time nurturing the structure of the Oral Torah as we know it today. Many of us have read the pithy sayings of these giants in Pirkei Avot (the Ethics of Our Fathers) but we are often unaware of just who these giants were and the background of their truly profound and far-sighted aphorisms.

Join the Academy and Rabbi Ramon Widmonte for a 5-part exploration of the architects of Judaism as we know it today. Learn the history, politics, wars and drama faced by these indomitable spirits and simultaneously plumb the depths of their teachings in the Ethics of our Fathers.

Acquire an organic, integrated grasp of the roots of our spiritual heritage which paints a breathtaking panorama where leadership, courage, boldness and humility come together.

The Academy is a vibrant, modern-orthodox program for Jewish thought, scholarship and education and that inspires our community with a lifelong love of Jewish learning. About us…

In association with Mizrachi South Africa and the London School of Jewish Studies (Honorary President: Emeritus Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, Dean: Dr. Raphael Zarum)