The Mussar Institute: Israel Experience 2020

“Spiritual Renewal”

We begin our trip on Tu B’Shvat, the “New Year” for trees. This is the time when the sap of the new growth has begun flowing and the dormant tree is waking from its winter slumber. Newness and re-growth are the lessons of the day.

Our trip ends with commemorating the Yahrtzeit of Rabbi Yisrael Salanter, who defined Mussar as the Torah’s antidote to timtum ha’lev, the closed heart that is no longer sensitive and supple. Mussar re-awakens us to truths we know well but have “forgotten” because they have become habitual to us. Mussar helps us “to renew our days as of old” (Megillat Eicha 5:21), to refresh our sensibilities, to enliven our awareness of what we already have.

Between these two celebratory days, we will study, travel, learn, connect, explore and enjoy as we revive and revitalize our inner lives, to bring home a refreshed spirit and a reawakened heart.


We are pleased to present to you the itinerary and tour package for your Israel trip. These have been carefully crafted to provide an experience that is engaging, fun, uplifting, informative and inspirational for the participants. All of our tours adhere to the highest standards of professionalism and you can be sure to expect the friendly, warm & dedicated service that have endeared us to thousands of satisfied clients.

    Costing- PARTICIPANT- Mussar Institute- February 2020 >


Registration is now open! Please click on the link to fill out the registration form. Upon clicking send, we will process your deposit and send you a confirmation e-mail within a couple of days to let you know you’re set to go!

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In the heart of the Hula Valley in the Upper Galilee, surrounded by green spaces and the chirping of birds, lies the Pastoral Hotel –

a meeting place for people who love getting away, culture, nature, music and the written word. The hotel offers a comfortable, peaceful getaway experience for couples and families, together with close proximity to all the main attractions of the Upper Galilee region, including Lake Hula, Manara Cliff, Mt. Hermon, wineries, museums and motor sports.


Hotel overview A boutique hotel in a spectacular historical setting, the unique Mount Zion Hotel overlooks Biblical landscapes and exudes a distinct, incomparable charm that makes a stay in any one of its luxurious rooms truly unforgettable. The Mount Zion Hotel can be found on the outskirts of the Old City in west Jerusalem, and this premier location provides guests with stunning views of, among other features, David’s Tower, Mount Zion, and the Hinnom Valley.
The hotel is within easy walking distance of the city’s main cultural, historical, and religious sites, and offers easy access to the best restaurants, shops, and public gardens. As a living part of Jerusalem’s proud history, the Mount Zion Hotel reflects an eclectic combination of cultural styles, making a stay in this beautiful hotel part of the complete Jerusalem experience. The Mount Zion features 117 guest rooms, 20 luxurious suites in a variety of styles, a spa and fitness center with an outdoor swimming pool, meeting spaces suitable for business use, and a large banqueting garden with panoramic views. Perfect for conferences, weddings, and receptions, the Mount Zion Hotel is the ideal choice for any vacation or event.


We’ve carefully crafted a document that answers many frequently asked questions. Feel free to browse through or you can always be in touch with your Israel Maven representative – Dani Cahn – at

    FAQ's >

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“Tu B’shevat”


Meet at 5:30PM at Ben Gurion International Airport

Drive up North

Festive orientation/Tu B’shvat celebration celebrating renewal in nature and in ourselves — dinner at hotel

Overnight: Pastoral Hotel Kfar Bloom

“Renewal through God’s Natural Wonders”: Morning teaching (Avi or Alan)

Visit Tel Dan National Park with its inspiring natural wonders; Paradise Springs – calmly babbling brooks creating channels along a well-developed riverside forest, Tel Dan, one of the largest ancient sites in Israel, with the remains of a 5000 year old city

Box lunch (included)

Kibbutz Misgav Am- meet with locals and hear about living on Israel’s Northern border

Meditative Experience at sunset

Dinner at Hotel

Hislamdus to close the day

Overnight: Kfar Bloom

“Tzfat” Morning Teaching: The early Kabbalists and their influence on the Baalei HaMussar (Avi or Alan)

Tzfat- tour of history

Visit the Arizal shul, the oldest synagogue in Safed, dating back to as early as 1522, with its windows looking out onto Mt. Meron and the tomb of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai. Hear teachings from the Arizal and his primary student and scribe, Rabbi Chaim Vital

Lunch on own

Interactive workshop with Noach Greenberg on the making of Teffillin

Dinner at Hotel

Hislamdus to close the day

Overnight: Kfar Blum

Mussar Lessons from Talmudic Times: Tzippori, Zichron and Caesarea: “Back in time”

Tzippori, site where the Mishnah was redacted. Teaching on Pirkei Avot as a Mussar text (Alan)

Lunch in Zichron at Nili Wine House

Caesarea – tour the hippodrome and Roman amphitheater, walk among impressive palace ruins, observe the splendor displayed in the “Travel Through Time” including a multi-media production showing a city being reawakened in front of our very eyes.

Drive to Jerusalem

Hislamdus on bus

Check in to Hotel

Dinner on own local options

Overnight: Mount Zion Hotel

Teaching after breakfast to begin Shabbat preparations: “Shabbat in Jerusalem through the Lens of Mussar,” with Alan or Guest speaker

Choice of:

  1. City of David and newest excavations. Walk through the newly discovered tunnel linking the City of David to the Kotel.
  2.  Jerusalem on the Scene (drive along understanding security challenges of modern times)

Lunch at Macheneh Yehudah, Jerusalem’s famous outdoor market, at your own expense.

Prepare for Shabbat.

Private Kabbalat Shabbat service at the Hotel overlooking the Old city of Jerusalem

Festive Shabbat Dinner at the Hotel.

Oneg Shabbat. Singing and socializing

Verbal Hislamdus to close the day

Overnight: Mount Zion Hotel

A Jerusalem Shabbat

Choice of free morning, davening in a local synagogue, “shul hopping—trying out various synagogues in Jerusalem,” or a guided walk through Jerusalem**, exploring the multi ethnic Jewish weave of the city, especially in Nachlaot, Israel’s most pluralistic neighborhood.

Return to the hotel for Shabbat Lunch.

Free time for rest and relaxation.

Walking Tour leading to Old City

Home Hospitality in the old city for light dinner with special guest speaker, Sara Yocheved Rigler

Walk back to hotel

Free evening in Jerusalem.

Hislamdus to close the day: Individual Journaling: What did you learn today?

Overnight: Mt. Zion Hotel, Jerusalem

Mussar in Jerusalem”

Renewal through Mussar Study

Beis HaMussar: Study with some of the greatest living Mussar teachers in Israel: (App. 10am start time) Rav Dovid Nussbaum, Rav Reuvain Leuchter

Lunch at local cafe’ Ricotta restaurant (included)

Afternoon of learning:​ Teachers and location TBD

Debrief and Hislamdus session to conclude learning (Avi and Alan)

Bus back to hotel approximately 5pm

Free evening and dinner on your own

Overnight: Mount Zion Hotel

“Renewing the Old”

Morning Teaching (Alan)

Visit the Biblical city of Shiloh, site of Mishkan

Back to Hotel no later than 3pm: Free afternoon in Jerusalem, lunch and dinner on your own

Jerusalem Light Show

Over night: Mount Zion Hotel

“Celebrating the “Mussar” Greats – From the Alter to Abraham”

Visit the Har Hazeitim cemetery: come face to face with the burial sites of the great Baalei HaMussar: Rav Zundel from Salant, Reb Naftolie Amsterdam, The Alter of Slabodka, Reb Elya Lopian, etc., hear about their lives and be inspired by their teachings.

Chevron- visit Maarat HaMachpeila, burial site of the Patriarchs and Matriarchs, see the site of Yeshivat Chevron, the first major Mussar Yeshiva in Israel, established by the Alter of Slabodka.

Lunch in Gush Etzion (app. 2:00PM) at own expense

Uri tour somewhere b/w Gush and Beit Shemesh

Possible bread baking:

Meditative experience at sunset (Uri and Alan)

Dinner at the Fertig’s home, Rabbi Haber guest speaker, kumzitz

Hislamdus on bus home

Overnight: Mount Zion Hotel

“Renewing the Mussar Tradition”

Morning Processing Session—Final Hislamdus session: What Have We Learned? With Avi and Alan. Reb Yisrael’s Yahrtzeit

Lunch at your own expense.

Visit the newly renovated Churvah Shul, hear inspiring stories about Rav Zundel, the rebbe of Rabbi Yisrael Salanter, who lived in this neighborhood, preparing us for Reb Yisrael’s Yahrtzeit, which we celebrate together later this evening.

Return to the hotel to refresh and prepare for the trip home.

Celebrate the Yahrtzeit of Reb Yisrael: Festive Concluding Dinner at Touro Restaurant and opportunity to share the impact of this experience. (Avi, Alan, Uri)

Depart for Ben Gurion Airport

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