Spiritual Resources for the

Election Season

On top of a world turned upside down by the pandemic, we approach the days surrounding November 3 with uncertainty and unease. As we wade deeper into election season, anxiety, tension, and a sense of social division are on the rise.
Jewish spiritual practice has never been more important—or potentially more helpful. We’re therefore grateful to share offerings from our faculty at IJS to help you navigate this personal and collective process as it unfolds. Below you will find written, audio, and visual kavanot—intentions, meditations, and other practices—reflecting upon leadership, tzedek (right and just action), experiencing voting as a sacred act, and remaining present, calm, and full-hearted as we navigate these weeks together.
May our efforts bring about a society of justice and compassion.
We hope you will find these written, audio, and visual kavanot – intentions, meditations, and other practices valuable, and we encourage you to share them with friends and family.


Prayers to Recite Before Voting
Rabbi Sam Feinsmith shares a beautiful new prayer to be recited before voting, as well as two prayers from Hasidic masters, to help you cast your vote with sacred intention.

Mindfulness Practice for Election Night
Rabbi Jordan Bendat-Appell guides you in creating your own mindfulness practice for election night, to help you stay calm and present as events unfold.

Justice, Justice Shall You Pursue
The pursuit of justice, tzedek, is a central pillar of Jewish spiritual practice. In this video, Rabbi Marc Margolius shares a meditation on tzedek as a synthesis of two other middot (spiritual qualities), zerizut (energetic response) and hodeya (gratitude).

A Heart that Listens
Rabbi Josh Feigelson explores Biblical texts that highlight essential qualities of leadership. In a democracy in which none of us is a monarch and all citizens are sovereign, he invites each of us to use these examples to learn how to engage in civic life.

Ki Ha’Adam Eitz HaSadeh: Because a Human Being is a Tree of the Field
Michal Fox Smart invites us to turn to the trees around us for inspiration, affirming that we have within us what we need to thrive.

Embodied Practice: The Breath of Life
In times of stress, it may be harder for us to access the full sense of aliveness that comes with taking a deep breath. In this video, Rabbi Myriam Klotz leads you in an embodied practice that focuses on the breath of life, nishmat chaim.

Hasidic Wisdom for Uncertain Times
Rabbi Jonathan Slater shares a teaching from the Esh Kodesh of R. Kalonymus Kalmish Shapira of Piaseczno (and the Warsaw Ghetto). “Allow this to become the ground of faith: that it will be possible to meet the challenge of this moment, and whatever comes next.”