Monday, July 21, 2008

Jewish Values for VBDM

One of the initial challenges for me in Values-Based Decision Making (VBDM) was that I frequently considered only a few values. Obviously, they were the ones I was most familiar with.

When my Rabbinic colleague began to teach me this process, I shared that dilemma with him. He generously shared a list of Jewish Values and Concepts that he had compiled. While it doesn't include all 614 mitzvot / commandments -- it's an excellent beginning.

Personally, I also found it helpful to use the Hebrew names for the mitzvot and middot / values. If you've ever studied a foreign language, you know that concepts don't always have an exact equivalent from one language to another. Using the Hebrew reminds me of two things:

  1. The translation may not be exact and often needs explanation
  2. VBDM is sacred work.

Values-Based Decision Making has taught me to mindfully make decisions which hopefully end up benefitting my community. Interestingly enough, sometime the end result is not the same solution I would have reached if I followed my first instinct.

[NOTE: if the link gives you problems, here's the roundabout way to get the list:

  1. Go to my website --
  2. Click on "Links to Learning"
  3. Scroll down to Jewish Values
  4. Click on the embedded link and the file should pop up. If not, please let me know]

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