With Heart in Mind: Mus­sar Teach­ings to Trans­form Your Life

  • Review
By – May 22, 2014

Mish­nah Avot 6:6 pro­pos­es forty-eight ways through which Torah can be acquired.” This rich teach­ing includes ele­ments that are clear­ly ways in which peo­ple learn con­tent, but also sug­gests traits and behav­iors that appear to build char­ac­ter. It is this area of char­ac­ter devel­op­ment that With Heart in Mind brings to the fore­front. The author explores each of the forty-eight char­ac­ter­is­tics and behav­iors, explain­ing how each can improve our char­ac­ter through prac­tic­ing it. 

In a very cre­ative way, With Heart in Mind moves a Mish­na­ic-era teach­ing into the more con­tem­po­rary area of Mus­sar, Jew­ish char­ac­ter devel­op­ment. The book is high­ly ver­sa­tile. It can be used as a dai­ly or week­ly guide to exper­i­ment­ing with new, more eth­i­cal liv­ing, read cov­er to cov­er (as this review­er chose to), or delved into on occa­sion. While the book is intend­ed to guide indi­vid­ual paths, it can also be a valu­able resource for adult learn­ing settings.

Relat­ed content:

Rab­bi Arnold D. Sam­lan is a Jew­ish edu­ca­tor and rab­bi liv­ing in Mia­mi, Flori­da. He serves as exec­u­tive direc­tor of the Orloff Cen­tral Agency for Jew­ish Edu­ca­tion of Broward County.

Discussion Questions