Tuesday, October 7, 2014

First Blogpost of Cohort 6!

By Hadas Nahar, Newton

It is so exciting to be writing this because this first post of our blog of signifies the amazing journey that we are all about to embark on for the next year and more. This past Sunday, we had our second workshop which was truly our first real sense of how a Diller workshop functions. To start it off, Rose gave a "One Minute Drash" based on the quote “It is a miserable thing to be ashamed of home” from Great expectations by Charles Dickens. She talked about how in order to open up and get to know each other, we can’t hide essentials aspects of who we are, even if we are embarrassed by them. Everyone will have the chance to give a mini "drash" at some point. If we hide parts of ourselves, in some sense we are lying to one another. Following that, we played a game of hot seat, and I myself took my turn in the chair. The questions were sometimes weird but often entertaining and the game was a great way to continue getting to know each other. We conducted a fake interview of the NPR interview For Whom Are We Responsible? which was followed up by interesting discussions in small groups. 

We met Shmaya Friedman, who will be our Madrich on our Shabbatonim. Shmaya is a young Chabad Rabbi from the North Shore, and his wife and two young daughters will be joining us. His family was a part of the Shabbatonim last year and they really enjoyed connecting to Diller. Shmaya works with teens of all backgrounds on the North Shore and he especially enjoys interacting with Diller Fellows.

 After finishing our discussions, we split up into two groups. Kineret and Ariana read out facts about every person in Cohort 6 and the two groups had to take an educated guess as to who the person was. It was a great way to continue getting a sense of who everyone is. Following this activity, Yitzhak gave us a Diller “Ted Talk” on the importance of focusing on finding your why in Diller and leadership. He asked us to think about why we were in Diller, and told us to “make it good” because we would be sharing it with everyone later. I know that when he said that, I thought that I was going to share out loud what my thoughts were but he proceeded to tell us that we had to keep this “why” in the back of our minds throughout our Diller journey. Instead of simply telling others our “why”, we were going to share this with other people by accomplishing these goals and living up to this “why”. I appreciated the message, and it made me think about the importance of “why” in not just Diller, but in everything you do. If there’s not a why, what is the point really?

After the speech, we began to plan the upcoming Shabbaton which I know I am super excited for and I’m sure everyone else is too. Channah and Ben were chosen to be the leaders of this Shabbaton; congratulations to them! We all chose an aspect of the Shabbaton to work on in small groups. I chose Havdalah. Havdalah was always one of my favorite parts of my camp, so I am inspired to make Diller havdalah just as amazing, but in it’s own way. Our group had really good discussions about what makes a great Havdalah and how to execute that. Afterwards, we chose various committees to be on. I am personally very excited for the bonding committee because I know we are going to plan great activities that everyone will love and that will bring us all closer.  To close this workshop, we wrote down ways that play out the Diller Core Values in our lives, and then drew visible connections to each other to signify the meaningful connections that we will make in Diller. We then segued into coming up with a list of five values to represent our Cohort. Despite some disagreement about arrow placement or wording of our values, we came up with a list that everyone was satisfied with. Lastly, Eitan gave us his One Minute Drash on how Cohort 6 can make a name for themselves and can really work to be something great. He connected this to Yom Kippur and how we sort of reinvent ourselves yearly. This workshop made me so excited for future workshops, shabbatons and of course, our Israel trip this summer. Our cohort is made up of such a great, diverse group of people who I already know are going bond really well and learn a lot from one another. 


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