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Finding Calm in the Psalms

Finding Calm in the Psalms


New content is added here each week. Scroll down to learn more about this initiative. You are welcome to join at any time throughout the cycle (ends Nov. 4).

The Psalms Cycle  

Every Friday, listen in on the conversation between Rabbis Andrew Kaplan Mandel and Nicole Auerbach (and the occasional guest), exploring meaningful messages from the weekly psalms.

Psalms 1-3 Theme: Reliance Video Reflection  
Psalms 4-8 Theme: Accountability Video Reflection  
Psalms 9-13 Theme: Distress Video Reflection  
Psalms 14-18 Theme: Righteousness Video Reflection  
Psalms 19-23 Theme: Sincerity Video Reflection  

To join in the next reading of Psalms, join one of our virtual communities!

Go Behind the Music 

Learn from musicians and poets who have transformed the psalms into their own unique creations to soothe and uplift our hearts.

Dan Nichols
Dan Nichols on Psalm 3



Dan Nichols


Danny Maseng on "Ma Tovu"



Dan Nichols


Billy Dreskin on "Mi Yagur"



Dan Nichols


Cantor Hollis Schachner on "Y'hiyu L'Ratzon"

About the Psalms Cycle

Reading the Psalms, a treasure trove of Biblical poetry and prayer, has long been Judaism’s antidote for trying times. Over three seasons in this challenging year of 2024, Central congregants and clergy will embark on an interactive text-ploration of all 150 Psalms – together. 

Beginning April 9, you are encouraged to read a Psalm every day (Sunday-Thursday). Here's how:

  • Central Synagogue members interested in daily content and engagement about the Psalms, accessible on your schedule, are invited to join a virtual study group on Central Square, Central Synagogue’s new online community for members only – now in pilot phase (see below for instructions to join). 
  • Participants in the Central Synagogue Neighborhood can connect with one another through the 929 group on Mighty Networks. 
  • Everyone can access the daily psalm and other meaningful content on the "929" website:

In addition, each Friday beginning April 12, this webpage will feature a new recording by Rabbis Andrew Kaplan Mandel and Nicole Auerbach, engaging in a deep dive of the week's psalms, often with special guests. Musicians, theologians, and poets will weigh in on the modern relevance of these ancient texts and pose critical questions for discussion. 

Cantor Mutlu on Psalm 23

As the launch for our six-month journey to read the entire Book of Psalms, Cantor Dan Mutlu offered insights about the history of Biblical music -- and shared his unique and stirring rendition of "The Lord is My Shepherd." Rabbis Andrew Kaplan Mandel and Nicole Auerbach explained how members of our community can participate in the "Finding Calm in the Psalms" exploration through November.

How to Join Central Square

For Central Members Only

  1. Visit Central Square and enter your email address 
  1. Check your email for an invitation to join the community 
  1. Follow the email directions to set up your username and password 
  2. Request to join the Psalms Group, featured at top of the welcome page
  3. Start reading and responding to Rabbi Mandel's posts each day

* Tip: A desktop browser is recommended for your first login. Central Square is hosted by Mighty Networks. Download the Mighty Networks app to stay connected while on the go. 


I’m not a member of Central Synagogue. How can I participate?

You’re invited to listen in to each week’s conversation recording, posted on this webpage.  And, if you’re part of The Neighborhood, share your Psalms reflections in the 929 group.  

The Psalms Cycle has already started. Can I still join the online discussion?

Yes, you’re welcome to join at any point in the cycle.

What is a chevruta?

Learning in chevruta is the practice of studying Jewish texts in partnership. Chevruta partners decide how frequently they wish to connect and whether to do so by phone, Zoom, text message, or in person. 

Is a chevruta required to participate?

Learning in chevruta is an optional way to elevate your Psalms experience. If you would like to be paired with a chevruta partner, complete the interest form in the Central Square Psalms group.

What clergy will be participating in this study group?

Rabbi Andrew Kaplan Mandel will be joined by his own chevruta partner, Rabbi Nicole Auerbach, as well as a host of guests: musicians Ellen Allard, Cantor Jordan Franzel, Rabbi Shefa Gold, Cantor Becky Mann, Danny Maseng, Chava Mirel, Cantor Dan Mutlu, Dan Nichols, Cantor Charles Osborne, Cantor Jenna Pearsall, Danya and Eyal Rivlin, Hollis Schachner, Cantor Josh Warshawsky, Cantor Natalie Young, as well as Dr. Gabby Cudjoe Wilkes, Rabbi Hilly Haber, Rabbi Debra Robbins, Rabbi Jade Sank Ross, and Rabbi Mo Salth.  

What if I don’t have time to read the five Psalms each week?

No worries, “Finding Calm in the Psalms” is designed to be adaptable to your lifestyle—feel free to get creative in how you choose to participate. Also, Rabbi Mandel and Rabbi Auerbach will be summarizing what they have read in their weekly recording, if you want to catch up. 

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