This course is offered each year during Term 1 (Feb-Apr).

Date & Time:

Our 2023 Term 1 Understanding Judaism course meets on Monday evenings from 7:00-8:30pm beginning on 13 February 2023 (New Zealand time). The course meets for 10 consecutive weekly sessions. The final session will be held on Monday 17 April 2023. If you live outside of New Zealand and wish to Zoom in to our live class sessions, check the nearest local Time Zone equivalent below:

Time Zone equivalents:

for live-streaming Zoom Sessions from New Zealand. If your Time Zone doesn't suit our live-streamed class, you can also access our courses by watching the live-recorded sessions that are posted to the course webpage each week, usually the next day.

  • Honolulu, Hawai’i: begins Sun 12 Feb 2023, 8:00-9:30pm

  • US Pacific: begins Sun 12 Feb 2023, 10:00-11:30pm

  • US Eastern: begins Mon 13 Feb 2023, 1:00 -2:30am

  • London, UK: begins Mon 13 Feb 2023, 6:00 -7:30am

  • Paris, France: begins Mon 13 Feb 2023, 7:00-8:30am

  • New Delhi, India: begins Mon 13 Feb 2023, 11:30am-1:00pm

  • Bangkok, Thailand: begins Mon 13 Feb 2023, 1:00-2:30pm

  • Singapore: begins Mon 13 Feb 2023, 2:00-3:30pm

  • Tokyo, Japan: begins Mon 13 Feb 2023, 3:00-4:30pm

  • Sydney, Australia: begins Mon 13 Feb 2023, 5:00-6:30pm


This ten-week course, part of our World Religions series, provides a detailed introduction to the history, texts, denominations and contemporary beliefs and practices of the Jewish tradition.

Individual sessions focus on: • Early Biblical History: Genesis; • Early Biblical History: Exodus; • Early Biblical History: First Temple Period; • Early Biblical History: Second Temple Period; • Jewish Messianism; • Diaspora, Development and the Emergence of Rabbinic Judaism; • Sacred Texts: Torah & Talmud; • Contemporary Beliefs and Practices; • Jewish Festivals and Commemorations; • Jewish Ethics & the Concept of Tikkun Olam.

Course curriculum

    1. EarthDiverse Course Information

    2. EarthDiverse Zoom instructions

    3. 2023T1 Judaism recommended readings list

    1. 20230213 T1.1 Intro to Judaism PDF

    2. 20230213 T1.1 RD301 Judaism video

    1. 20230220 T1.2 RD301 Judaism video

    2. 20230220 T1.2 Judaism-Genesis 1 PDF

    3. Enuma Elish

    1. 20230227 T1.3 RD301 Judaism video

    2. 20230227 T1.3 Judaism-Genesis 2 PDF

    1. 20230306 T1.4 Judaism-Genesis 3, Exodus PDF

    2. 20230306 T1.4 RD301 Judaism video

    1. 20230313 T1.5 Judaism - First Temple & Exile PDF

    2. 20230313 T1.5 RD301 Judaism video

Additional course info:

  • Videos and PDF content of class presentations or whiteboard notes are uploaded weekly after each live session
  • Begins on Mon 13 Feb 2023
  • NZ time: 7:00 - 8:30pm

Meet our Instructor:

Executive Director, Senior Lecturer Dr Todd Nachowitz, PhD

Dr Todd Nachowitz, PhD, is the Founder and Executive Director of EarthDiverse. Todd is a Hamilton-based lecturer, anthropologist, environmentalist and diversity educator. He previously taught in Religious Studies at the University of Waikato, teaching courses on Comparative Religion and Religious Fundamentalism & Extremism. Todd holds a Masters Degree in Development Anthropology from Syracuse University in upstate New York (1991) and a PhD from the University of Waikato (2015) in Political Science and Public Policy where he completed his thesis on diversity governance and the Indian diaspora in New Zealand.

Prior to settling in New Zealand in 1995, Todd lived and worked in the United States, India, Pakistan and Nepal. He spent 11 years in South Asia as the Academic Director for university study-abroad programmes in Varanasi, India (for the University of Wisconsin-Madison); Lahore, Pakistan (for the University of California-Berkeley); and Kathmandu, Nepal (for School for International Training, based in Brattleboro, Vermont, USA) focusing on language, culture and religion.

Todd speaks Hindi and Urdu, and is a specialist in comparative world religions and the history, religions, languages and cultures of South Asia. He also currently teaches our Hindi and Urdu language courses and the Religious Diversity courses at EarthDiverse.


EarthDiverse, 401 Anglesea Street, Hamilton East, Hamilton or online via Zoom

We're located just a couple of shops north of the Hamilton Central Bus Station on the same side of the Street. We're located on the first floor, above Copier Word. Our Entrance is on the left side of the building. Those looking for parking for our evening classes can park just in front of the building in any of the available car parks. Daytime parking can be found in our dedicated car parks, or free 2-hour on-street daytime parking can be found just in front of Anglesea Street.

Distance Learning:

This course has distance-learning options for those unable to attend the live class sessions in Hamilton. Students have three options for attending our courses once they have registered:

  • Attend in-person classes in our Hamilton classrooms at the regularly scheduled day and time.

  • Attend our live on-line classroom sessions via Zoom at the regular scheduled day and time.

  • Watch the live-recorded class sessions at your leisure, at a time, day and place more suited to your schedule.

Distance-Learning option:

  • In addition to our in-person classes in Hamilton, our courses offer distance learning options for those unable to attend classes in-person. Live-streamed Hamilton classes are available via free Zoom software for those living outside the Waikato. Live-streaming allows you to participate fully in your own learning, ask questions of the instructor and participate fully in the same way as if you were in the physical classroom.

  • Those unable to attend the scheduled date and time of the actual class sessions, or those who need to miss a class or two due to previous engagements or unexpected illness, can watch any or all of the live-recorded video sessions on their computers, laptops, tablets or mobile devices and study at their own pace and in their own time.

  • Detailed instructions on how to access our distance learning components will be sent after completing your registration. There are no additional fees for this service. However, distance learners will need access to a desktop or laptop computer with a good quality web-camera (tablet devices and mobile phones can also access our live-streamed classes), a built-in microphone (most modern laptops have built-in microphones) or a headset with a microphone. You will also need to download and install the free Zoom software on your computer or device. Those accessing the video recordings will be able to do so with a simple web browser on any device.

Pricing options

Ten consecutive 1.5 hour weekly sessions. All prices in NZ dollars and includes GST. Unwaged includes students, seniors and retirees.


This class has no assignments, required readings, quizzes, tests or exams. All classes encourage questions and group discussion. PDF copies of each class presentation are to the course webpage the next day so that you are free to focus on class content rather than taking notes. You are most welcome to come, sit back, relax, take part in and enjoy the discussions! The video recordings of each class session are available 1-2 days after each live class session so that you can catch up on any missed classes.


• Any Term can be taken independently of the others, and there are no prerequisites for any of the Term courses. • This class has no assignments, required readings, quizzes, tests or exams. • All classes encourage questions and group discussion. • PDF copies of each class presentation are posted on the course webpage within 1-2 days of each class so that you are free to focus on class content rather than taking notes. • There are no refunds for missed classes. • Guests of registered participants are welcome to attend a single class at no charge. • Certificates of Completion for any particular Term Course or Series are available for Professional Development purposes upon request at the end of each Term or Series.

Prerequisites :

There are no prerequisites for this course