Yiscah travels around the world addressing the spiritual practice of encountering the Divine spark within, the foundation of authentic living.
She relies on Jewish spiritual teachings to inform and uplift her students and audiences, acting as a compass guiding them to their own authentic paths. As a spiritual trailblazer, Yiscah exemplifies what it means to carve one’s own path, as she has grappled with the entanglements at the intersection of her spirituality, Jewish tradition and passionate desire to live a life of authenticity.
“Yiscah Smith walks the talk of transformation and spiritual truth, empowering and inspiring readers and listeners to wake up to the radical possibilities of a life lived with honesty, courage and sacred presence.“
— Rabbi Amichai Lau-Lavie
Founding Spiritual Leader, Lab/Shul
NYC, New York, NY
“Yiscah is a gifted teacher who reads Torah with sensitivity and humility, but it is her story, her voice, her presence that are absolutely game changing. As she guided our community through a beautiful teaching one Shabbat morning on the mandate to speak, live & love from the authentic self, it occurred to me that that very talk might actually save someone’s life. She is a blessing and a treasure.“
— Rabbi Sharon Brous
Founder/Senior Rabbi, IKAR
Los Angeles, CA
“Yiscah is a wonderful educator and speaker. Her love of Torah and the meaning it brings to her life is infectious. Her personal story resonates with students of all backgrounds as each of us has challenges and obstacles we need to overcome in order to be more connected to our true inner-selves.”
— Rabbi Rahel Berkovits
1. WALKING WITH YOUR INNER SPIRIT: FIVE OPPORTUNITIES, PRACTICES AND ENCOUNTERS TO EXPERIENCE THE DIVINE WITHIN: PICK ANY TWO:
a) Cultivating the understanding heart - bringing thought and feeling into partnership & harmony.
b) Developing the practice of freely speaking to the Divine on your own in your own words and at your own particular auspicious time.
c) Knowing how to observe, pay attention to and gaze at your feelings: the keys to your soul.
d) Nurturing behavior that welcomes the soul and demonstrates our spiritual nature: acting with genuineness, wholeheartedness and simplicity.
e) Incorporating music, song and melody into the expression of your faith, your belief and your soul.
2. JEWISH LIVING AS THE CULTIVATION OF A SPIRITUAL PRACTICE.
This session explores excerpts from Rabbi Kalonymous Kalman Shapira, the Piaseczner Rebbe (d.1943). These teachings describe Jewish living and tradition as the cultivation of a spiritual practice. The Piaseczner Rebbe's inspiring and progressive ideas discuss our inherent spiritual nature, how we awaken to the Divine presence within us and how we can integrate this awareness into a fuller mind, body and soul experience in our lives.
3. "IT IS NOT GOOD FOR A PERSON TO BE ALONE." REALLY? THEN WHY WERE WE CREATED THIS WAY?
This session will explore the unique way in which God created Adam, the first human being. Unlike all other creations, Adam was created in the singular. Why? What are we to learn from this? Especially in light of the verse, "It is not good for a person to be alone," we are compelled to delve into this apparent contradiction.
4. CULTIVATING THE SPIRITUAL PRACTICE OF SACRED CHUTZPAH: HUMBLED SELF CONFIDENCE.
This session discusses the high value that the Jewish tradition places on
bitachon atzmi – self confidence - and being able to trust in one’s self & one’s
judgment. There is something deep-rooted, a fundamental matter, that without it, one’s life journey in general is not able to succeed. This is based on the verse in Numbers 14:24, referring to Calev as possessing a ruach acheret – a different spirit.
5. TESHUVA - DÉJÀ VU PERHAPS?
This session explores cultivating the spiritual practice of returning to, reclaiming and renewing a moment from our past. This allows an encounter with the Divine within oneself - with the energy that the Creator uniquely gifted to each human being --- one's spiritual center. We are able to move closer to an awareness that defines us as Godly --- a moment deeply implanted within us at conception.
6. LECH LECHA - GO TO YOURSELF: MOVING FROM ONE SELF TO ANOTHER SELF.
This session explores the spiritual practice of Lech Lecha --- moving away from one sense of self --- the finite self, the ego based self, the limited self, towards another sense of self --- the infinite self, the beyond ego self, the limitless self. Yet, why would a person move away from the familiar to an unknown destination?
7. CULTIVATING CLOSENESS WITH THE DIVINE THROUGH AN ONGOING PRIVATE CONVERSATION.
A teaching on the spiritual practice of cultivating closeness with the Divine through integrating Tefilah - prayer and Talmud Torah: talking to the Divine in your own unique and authentic way causes the Divine in return to speak to you
in an individual and unique way as well.