03 March 2015
Cheryl P. was part of The Jewish Federation’s ConnectGens Fellowship in 2012 where she came up with the Minyan of Thinkers venture. This program is for analytical, bright, passionate Jewish thinkers in the DC area to come together and discuss the most serious, contemporary issues for our community. Watch her presentation.
How did you get involved with the DC Jewish community?
Two kind-hearted people connected me to the community. They introduced me to their friends and took me along to prayer services and Shabbat lunches. It’s funny how going somewhere with another person makes all that self-consciousness melt away.
How did you come up with the idea for the Minyan of Thinkers?
In attending some prayer services in DC, I found that people were suspending intellectual honesty and consistency for pluralism and community. I thought we could have that togetherness and be true to our values and beliefs. The idea of a new kind of minyan that harnessed the brainpower of smart, yearning, searching young Jews bubbled up in my mind, and erupted like a volcano. And the Minyan of Thinkers was born!
What is your favorite part about being Jewish?
Being part of a people that loves learning and wants to make the world better.
Who is your Jewish role model?
Abraham Joshua Heschel. He actualized his Jewishness through fighting for racial equality alongside MLK.
What is your favorite Jewish food/holiday/or tradition (you pick!)?
Morning prayer. It’s an awesome consciousness raising activity that changes the trajectory of my day.
What is one piece of advice you try and live by?
In Lean In, Sheryl Sandberg said not to be afraid. I’ve decided to be bold and not apologize for shaking things up.