Ari Felix – astrologer, poet and bruje – speaks to the magic of planets as intimate ancestors. In conversation with their mother, Kohenet YA Rivera, Ari muses on inhabiting a multiplicity of identities, alchemizing at the intersection of old and new paradigms, and radically listening to the call of our cosmologies which compel us toward our purpose.
Koach Baruch Frazier – rabbinic student and co-founder of the Tzedek Lab – shares stories of living at the intersection of Black, trans, queer and Jewish identities. In this conversation with organizer and educator Shoshana Akua, KB explores the griefs and joys of connecting to ancestry, offers insight into resilience through the practice of lament and speaks to the power of drumming as a spiritual tool and political act.
Mike Moskowitz, scholar-in-residence at the world’s largest LGBTQ Synagogue, speaks on ways his ancestors have inspired him to be both deeply traditional and radically progressive. He shares of his journey from receiving Ultra-Orthodox Rabbinic ordination to becoming an advocate for trans rights and vocal ally for LGBTQ inclusivity.
Day Schildkret, creator of Morning Altars and author of Hello, Goodbye: 75 Rituals for Times of Loss, Celebration and Change, speaks of rituals as the rhythms and traditions that bring a sense of stability in the face of uncertainty. He reflects on the power of grief, initiation and the magic of showing up.
Noam Shuster-Eliassi speaks on her path as a peace-builder in Israel-Palestine and how it led her to becoming a renowned stand-up comedian. In conversation with Hadar Cohen, Noam shares of her childhood in the intentional Jewish and Palestinian village, Neve Shalom Wahat Al Salam, and her experience working toward peace through the art of comedy.
Dean Spade, renowned author and activist, shares of his work towards queer and trans liberation, Palestinian solidarity and ways we can understand the Jewish practice of tzedakah as a path for radical redistribution of resources. In conversation with Dori Midnight, Dean explores his journey with Judaism, innovating tradition, and ancestors of blood and of choice.
Binya Koatz shares the exquisite blessing of Jewish transcestors in this conversation with rabbi and reclaimer of tekhines Noam Lerman. Binya weaves stories of love for her feminine queer ancestral line, her mix of Sephardi and Askekanzi heritages, and ways the past and future have the possibility to cocreate each other through magic.
Rena Branson, founder of the Queer Niggun Project, speaks on her work as a community organizer, song-weaver, and teacher of both traditional Hassidic and new liturgical melodies. In this conversation with Riv Ranney Shapiro, Rena reflects on the power of communal song to metabolize trauma and on their experience bringing Jewish spiritual gatherings and music to people incarcerated in NYC jails.
Jericho Vincent, in conversation with Rami Avraham Efal, speaks on the practice of holding ancestors in both gratitude and accountability. Jericho shares of their journey from an ultra-Orthodox rabbinic home through multiple traditions before returning to Judaism, and ways their non-binary identity impacts how they relate to gendered aspects of Jewish tradition.
Arielle Rivera Korman, in conversation with Kohenet Keshira haLev Fife, speaks about co-founding Ammud: Jews of Color Torah Academy, their shared Filipinx Jewish identity, and on the role of song and music in her ancestral journey.
Ariel Luckey, co-founder of Jews on Ohlone land and development director for Sogorea Te’ urban indigenous women-led land trust, reflects on ancestral harm, indigenous solidarity, and Jewish practices of tshuvah, or return. Ariel, in conversation with Leora Cockrell, also speaks to assimilation, spiritual yearning, and ways he engages these themes through hip-hop and klezmer music.
Nina Pick—poet, counselor, and oral historian—speaks about her experiences as the grandchild of Auschwitz survivors and her work conducting interviews with Holocaust survivors, descendants, and others. She reflects on themes of ancestral trauma, intergenerational healing, and the importance of ecological mourning.
Starhawk, renowned author and ecofeminist spiritual leader, speaks of ancestrally-resourced non-violent resistance in this conversation with Rae Abileah. She shares stories about her Earth Activist training, Palestinian solidarity work, and the power of rooting in joy as a transformative practice.
George Mordecai - a rabbi, cantor and composer born in Australia to Iraqi Jews from India and Singapore - shares the ancestral journeys and musical influences that led to the creation of his album, Safra, and speaks to the power of communal chanting and participatory prayer.
Aurora Levins Morales, in conversation with Dori Midnight, dives into the transformative power of poetry, storytelling and radical genealogy. Aurora shares of her Puerto Rican and Ashkenazi roots, her experience with chronic illness, and imagines what is possible in a world of protective reciprocity.
Daniela Labi, Libyan-Jewish filmmaker, speaks on making art in conversation with her ancestors, the complexities of claiming Arab-Jewish identity and ways ancestral connection supports her body activism.
Yoshi Silverstein shares wisdom on sacred ecology, embodied Jewish practice, and building just and resilient communities. He welcomes us with grounding practice, tells stories of his Chinese and Askenazi lineages, and speaks on ways diaspora impacts the relationship between land, culture and ancestral home.
Rabbi Léah Novick, an elder of the Jewish Renewal movement, shares practices of connecting with ancestors of inspiration, and her work to keep alive the teachings of 19 century Italian poet Rachel Luzzatto Morpurgo, 12th century tsadeket Dulcie of Worms, Maccabean Queen Shlom Tzion and 16th century Kurdish Rabbah Asenath Barazani. Reb Léah speaks of her journeys with these women, of reclaiming relationship with Shekhinah and reflects on ways her earlier decades of activism inform her journey...
Deatra Cohen & Adam Siegel, authors of the acclaimed book Ashkenazi Herbalism, bring us on a journey into Eastern European plant remedies and the world of traditional Ashkenazi Jewish healers. They offer wisdom on building relationships with ancestral plants, and share candidly about the gifts and challenges of their journey into rediscovering the herbal medicines of their people.
Mazal Masoud Etedgi, founder of B’samim Apothecary, shares Moroccan Jewish plant magic and sacred prayersong, and speaks into the challenges of longing and belonging in diaspora. Mazal offers insight into ancestral healing at the intersections of creativity, chronic illness and trans and non-binary identity.
Galeet Dardashti takes us on a journey into Persian Jewish Prayer, shares exquisite compositions, and speaks intimately on weaving her voice with the voices of her ancestors, across place and time.
Qes Efraim Lawi shares Beta Israel / Ethiopian Jewish traditions, offers prayersongs in his ancestral language of Ge’ez, and speaks about being the first spiritual leader of Beta Israel / Ethiopian Jewish community born in diaspora.
Taya Mâ Shere welcomes us into season 2, reflecting on ways ancestors shape our identity, offering insight into the complexities of longing and belonging and foreshadowing the Jewish Ancestral Healing season to come.