Most Jews have no problem with science; the challenge is often getting them excited about Judaism. So how can we use science as a way to engage our communities? What are the biggest, most interesting and most pressing questions in the scientific community that also influence Jewish thought and Jewish living? And how can we bring both science and Judaism together to enhance our lives and our communities?

The American Association for the Advancement of Science Program of Dialogue on Science, Ethics and Religion and Sinai and Synapses ran explored these questions through a series of webinars hosted by Clal – The National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership, and funded by the John Templeton Foundation.

Are We Still Special If We Are Not Alone?
Professor Sara Seager, Astrophysicist and Planetary Scientist at MIT

As we discover more exoplanets, and learn just how expansive our universe is, how do we situate ourselves in the cosmos? Are we insignificant, or are we special?

The Science of G’milut Chasadim
Professor David DeSteno, Professor of Psychology, Northeastern University

What blocks us from being compassionate, and what engenders more compassion in others? How do we respond to people who are different from us, or who might hold different beliefs?

Is Neuroscience Undercutting Moral Responsibility?
Professor Nathaniel Daw, Professor of Psychology, Princeton Neuroscience Institute

As we discover more and more about the brain, will  neuroscientific “explanations” about moral behavior become “excuses”? How “free” are we, and how would we even know?

In addition to webinars, here are other content resources for Jewish professionals to use science in their work.

Science: The Wide Angle
American Association for the Advancement of Science Dialogue on Science, Ethics and Religion

Bring world-class science into your classroom with a compelling short film series from the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

How Science Can Help Jewish Professionals
Rabbi Geoffrey A. Mitelman

Most Jews are probably more likely to read the New York Times science section or watch “Cosmos” than to engage in Talmud study.