One thing I'm finding interesting is the communal element: both 1) that we're learning throughout the day in the shul (reminding me of the בטלנים mentioned early on in the first chapter of Megillah), holding the fort down, so to speak, as well as 2) that members of the community can come in and learn with us as well as listen to public Torah lectures. It sounds neat to me in some way - I think in the increasing Torah kind of way.
As far as putting up the lectures online, I'm not quite sure about that just yet, though I plan on putting up the public lectures. Tonight's lecture was given by Rabbi Klapper (pictured giving the lecture) on the topic of "Is There A Mitzvah To Prevent Genocide?" using the same sources he had prepared for Edah. I thought it was decent, though I didn't quite buy his push to necessitate action halakhically when a genocide is going on. I agree that it should be a moral obligation, though. Also, he did make a couple of interesting comments regarding the uniqueness of America in Jewish history, which was practically ענינא דיומא (topic of the day - or topic relevant to the day), as American Independence Day was the day before.
Anyways, I'm going to end this post here, leaving off with an interesting quote from Rabbi Klapper quoting Rabbi Norman Janis, that he
used to point out to us frequently at pluralistic settings that all the concern about "Who is a Jew?" and breaking/destroying the community, and people can't marry each other, that some notion of a historical perspective should come into play with this whole perek (chapter four of Kiddushin) about defining the whole Jewish community in terms of various non-intermarriageable groups. And it's not clear that creating the same situation in terms of Reform and Conservative marriages is inevitably going to lead to the collapse of the Jewish people any more than עשרה יוחסין, which seems to be much worse.---------------------------
Tags: Who is a Jew, Jewish unity, Jewish community, Summer Beit Midrash, Rabbi Klapper, Summer 2006, genocide, Darfur, Klapper Kollel