Introductory Dialogue Sessions

Would you like to have a constructive, respectful conversation with people whose views about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict are different from yours? Are you interested in talking about your experiences, feelings, convictions, and questions in an environment that promotes mutual learning?

The Jewish Dialogue Group invites Jews of all perspectives and backgrounds to our upcoming introductory dialogue sessions. 

Where: We are currently planning dialogues in Philadelphia, New York,  and Boston.

When: The dialogues will take place on Sundays or weekday evenings. The times of the dialogues will depend on the availablity of those who are interested. Each session will last two hours.

Who: These gatherings will give you an opportunity to talk with other Jews who have strong feelings about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and related issues, including both people who are like-minded and people whose perspectives may be very different from your own. The dialogues will be useful to you whether you feel certain about your views or you feel more ambivalent or confused.

What: You will have the chance to:

  • Share your perspective on Israel and the Israeli-Palestinian conflictadam_levick_and_rachel_buxbaumadam_levick_and_rachel_buxbaum
  • Learn about perspectives different from your own
  • Reflect on your own experiences, feelings, ideas, and questions
  • Hear about resources you can use to foster constructive dialogue in your own synagogue, school, organization, or community, as well as opportunities to take part in additional JDG programs

Signing Up:  Please use our online form to tell us a little about yourself and your interests. We will get back to you to let you know about options for participating.

Questions? Email us at [email protected] or call 215-266-1218.


What to Expect

In our dialogue programs, JDG leaders facilitate intimate conversations in small groups. The facilitators set up structure for the conversation and pose specially designed questions that help participants speak and listen in a manner that fosters mutual understanding and reflection. We encourage you to explore your differences, seeking to understand them more fully, but not to persuade one another or to seek consensus or compromise.

Our dialogues invite participants to speak about several topics:

  • How the conflict has affected you, and experiences that have shaped your responses to the conflict
  • What is at heart of the matter for you — how you see and feel about the situation, your hopes and fears, and any commitments or sense of obligation that you feel
  • Questions you are wrestling with, and any areas of confusion or uncertainty

Each participant has the same amount of time to address these questions. Next, participants engage in less-structured discussion in which you can ask each other questions, respond to one another, and build on ideas that have come up.

All participants will be expected to observe the following ground rules:

  • Listen attentively.
  • Speak honestly in ways that promote learning and genuine inquiry.
  • Seek to understand each other.
  • Refrain from explicit or implicit attack or persuasion.
  • Omit language that any participant experiences as disrespectful.
  • Treat what others say as confidential.