An inspiring and accessible guide, drawn from Jewish wisdom, for building the inner qualities necessary to work effectively for social justice.
The world needs changing—and you’re just the person to do it! It’s a matter of cultivating the inner resources you already have. If you are serious about working for social justice and change, this book will help you bring your most compassionate, wise, and courageous self to the job.
Bringing positive social change to any system takes deep self-awareness, caring, determination, and long-term commitment. But polarization, the slow pace of change, and internal conflicts among activists and organizations often leads to burnout and discouragement among the very people needed to make a difference. Changing the World from the Inside Out distills centuries of Jewish wisdom about cultivating and refining the inner life into an accessible program for building the qualities necessary to accomplish sustainable change. Through explorations of deep motivation, inner-drive, and traits like trust and anger, this book engages the reader in a journey of self-development and transformation, demonstrating that sustainable activism is indeed a spiritual practice. Jaffe offers accessible and meaningful guidance for this journey—with exercises, contemplations, and discussion points that can be used individually or in a group.
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About the Author
Table of Contents
Part 1 The Compass
1 Motivations for Change: What Do You Yearn For? 15
2 Serving with Our Full Selves: The Yetzer Harah 38
Part 2 Signposts
3 A Little light Overcomes Much Darkness: Seeking Good Points 61
4 The Power of Choice 82
Part 3 Walking the Path
5 Practice 105
6 Responding to the Call: Anavah/Humility 112
7 Creative Discomfort: Savlanut/Patience 137
8 Created in the Divine Image: Kavod/Dignity and Honor 158
9 Balancing Trust with Effort: Bitachon/Trust 185
Part 4 Rest
10 Shabbat as a Social-Change Ritual 211
Appendix A Facilitator's Guide 233
Appendix B Group Guidelines 237
Appendix C Spiritual Check-in Guidelines 239