Tishrei 5779

Journey into the Unknown 

Shanah Tovah! 

May you be blessed with a healthy, happy and successful year. The new year brings new opportunities for reflection, growth and journeying. To get us thinking about our first brave new steps into the new year we’ll focus on the Jewish concept of Lech Lecha. Literally these words mean “Go Forth” or “Take yourself and go”. 

Lech Lecha (Go Forth)
Take the Next Step: The Jewish approach promotes living life as a journey, not a destination. Take action and move forward – toward a place you don’t yet know, but will discover. 

The call of ‘Lech Lecha’ propels us to move forward…into uncertainty, just like our forefather Abraham was told by G-d to ‘Lech Lecha’, to go forward, leave his land, birthplace and family and journey to a place unknown. As a nation, the first ‘Lech Lecha’ command was to leave Egypt and live in sukkot (booths). This could be the reason that Sukkot comes so quickly after Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur; to remind us that moving forward involves leaving the place where we feel comfortable and secure (i.e. our home), and journeying forth into a place of insecurity and uncertainty (i.e. the Sukkah).

How does this impact the work that we do? Consider the following questions:


Go Deeper

To delve more into these ideas, Yesod spoke with Student Rabbi David Maxa from the Abraham Geiger College in Germany, about the ‘Lech Lecha’ journey and how it applies to Jewish community work.  

In his short (15 minute) podcast David focuses on the idea of insecurity and how we can learn to deal with it using the wisdom derived from ‘Lech Lecha’.

We are delighted to offer David’s podcast in both German and English. There is also a German transcript of his ideas available here. (Note that German podcast starts with a very short English introduction).

For more about David Maxa’s ideas see here.

We also have a Sefaria source sheet to accompany these ideas.

Shanah tova – go forth and Lech Lecha! 

The Yesod Team 


Additional resources:

For more information about the Jewish concept of Lech Lecha, and others, Hillel International has a great educators curriculum.

Zenpencils has a great trigger poster into diving into the unknown.

If you’re still feeling nervous about taking the next steps then this Forbes article explains how to Build your Courage Muscles.

The Stanford Social Innovation Review looks at The Inner Life of the Changemaker and the stages involved.


View Resource of the Month Archive for resources posted in previous months.