A path of daily living based on ten spiritual practices that have been used by Jews for centuries. MINYAN is an invaluable source of inspiration and insight not only for those large numbers who are returning to Judaism but for people of all faiths who are looking for a way to integrate spirituality into their daily lives.
In Jewish practice, a "minyan" is a quorum of 10 Jewish men required for any kind of religious service. Here Shapiro, rabbi of Temple Beth Or in Miami, Fla., expands the concept of minyan to make it spiritually meaningful to both men and women, Jews and non-Jews. Using the example of the great Hasidic wise man Baal Shem Tov, whose life of isolation in the forest illustrated the search for God in the heart, Shapiro claims that "minyan has one aim: to awaken you to God as the Source and the Substance of Reality." After an initial section explaining that minyan is a way of living everyday life that infuses all religious practice, he introduces "the ten practices of minyans," which he claims are the ten spiritual principles for living a life of integrity. These principles are: meditation, repetition, inspirational reading, attention, generosity, kindness, dream interpretation, ethical consumption, self-perfection and Sabbath. For example, in the section on "inspirational reading," Shapiro emphasizes the ways in which the reading aloud of certain biblical texts prepares the heart and soul for meditation. Although Shapiro's book is general enough to appeal to non-Jews, his in-depth focus on Jewish spiritual traditions revitalizes our understanding of the practice of minyan within the Jewish tradition.