Online Zohar Course


Daniel Matt

Several years ago, I completed an 18-year project of translating and annotating the Zohar, published by Stanford University Press—The Zohar: Pritzker Edition. I am now teaching two online Zohar courses.

In one course, which meets weeklyZohar Zoom—we study the Zohar in my English translation. Nearly all the description below relates to this English course.

In the other course, which meets monthly, we study the Zohar in the original Aramaic (alongside Hebrew and English translations). Video recordings are available following each monthly meeting. For information on the Aramaic course, see

https://hmqm.org/course/zohar-jewish-text-learning-circle-in-aramaic/

To register for this Aramaic course, email Tamar Zaken: tamar@hmqm.org

The course in English—Zohar Zoom—began in January 2019. Currently there are about 150 people participating, including about 40 rabbis but also many folks without Hebrew fluency or any extensive background in studying traditional Jewish texts. At times, I refer to the original Aramaic text of the Zohar, but the course is intended especially for those who have not yet studied Zohar extensively or even at all. Some participants follow along in the original Aramaic as we explore the English translation. Newcomers are welcome to join,as they often do.

There are two ways to participate in this course. You can either attend the live weekly meetings on Zoom or watch video recordings of the meetings whenever you choose.

We meet on Tuesday evenings from 5 pm – 6:15 pm Pacific Time (8 pm – 9:15 pm Eastern Time). During the first hour, I teach a passage from the Zohar, following which there is time for questions. Recently we completed Volume 1 of The Zohar: Pritzker Edition and are now exploring Volume 2. If you join the course, you should obtain at least Volume 2.

Each series of the course consists of six weekly Zoom meetings, following which we take a break (for a couple weeks) and then continue with a new series (of six weekly meetings). In each series, we explore new passages from the Zohar, not repeating what has been covered. You can enroll in one of the earlier series or the current one or the upcoming one. With Zohar, it doesn’t matter that much where you dive in! You are welcome to start with the current or upcoming series. To some newcomers, I suggest enrolling in the first series (from early 2019) and then continuing with the current or upcoming series. Video recordings (of all 6 meetings of any one series) are available to anyone who enrolls in that series.

Series 12 runs from November 10 through December 15, 2020.

Series 13 runs from January 5 through February 9, 2021.

I have created a Facebook group for the course (Zohar Zoom), on which we engage in online discussion related to the Zohar. You are welcome to join this Facebook group even if you do not enroll in the Zohar course.

Here are links to 3 free sample video recordings from the course.

1)   The first meeting of the Zohar course (January 16, 2019). Here I provide a brief introduction to the Ten Sefirot, and then we explore a passage near the beginning of the Zohar (1:1b), in The Zohar: Pritzker Edition, Vol. 1, pp. 5-7.

https://youtu.be/NNoZsOin5bg

2)   A passage from the Zohar about meditating on a candle:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1N_ayViclozCw33dILLBhz0E_PtY3reyY/view 

3)   A passage from the Zohar on inviting the Ushpizin (Guests) into the Sukkah:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1aOUpcX29QwiG1Y3JKVdUyBg2FrS_e4l9/view?usp=sharing

To enroll, you simply pay for one of more series of the course. The cost of each series (of 6 weekly meetings) is on a sliding scale from $100 – $250. You determine the exact amount (between $100 – $250), based on what you can afford.

You can enroll by paying online via PayPal, Venmo (@Daniel-Matt), or Zelle, or by sending a check to my address (at the end of this description). If you’re using my email address for paying online, it’s danielcmatt@gmail.com). Please make sure to include my middle initial “c” because otherwise your payment will go to someone else with a very similar gmail address!

If you pay by Venmo or Zelle, there is no fee. If you pay by PayPal, there may be a small fee (which, however, you can avoid; see below). For paying on PayPal: If you have a PayPal account, please select “Sending to a friend” (not “Paying for an item or service”). If the default shows up as “Paying for an item or service,” you should be able to click on "Change" and change this to “Sending to a friend.” If you are paying from abroad, you may not have the option of “Sending to a friend.” Once you have paid, I will email you a link to the live weekly Zoom meetings and another link to the recordings.

When you pay on PayPal, please include your preferred email address in the space for a “note” on the PayPal payment page and also indicate which series of the ongoing course you are paying for (first, second, etc., or several). The cost (described above) is for each individual series of six weekly meetings.

If you do not have a PayPal account, you can join PayPal easily. If you do not wish to join PayPal, you can email me, letting me know how much you will be paying for the series (between $100 - $250) and I will have PayPal send you a payment request. Click on “Pay as guest.” The name "Daniel Matt" will show up (without the initial "c," which is fine). The default may appear as “Paying for an item or service,” but if there is an option, click on "Change" and change this to “Sending to a friend.” You will be charged a small fee for paying by credit card. (You can avoid this by joining PayPal, for free, and linking your bank account, for free.) If paying from abroad, you may not have the option of “Sending to a friend.”

If you prefer to pay by check, you can mail your check (made out to Daniel Matt) to the address at the end of this description. Please specify which series of the course you are paying for (first, second, etc., or several). The cost (described above) is for each individual series of 6 weekly meetings.

My mailing address: Daniel Matt, 1013 Middlefield Rd., Berkeley, CA 94708
My email:   danielcmatt@gmail.com  (Please include my middle initial “c”.)