The process of repentance, teshuva, presents each of us with both challenges and opportunities. While self-scrutiny, confession, and commitment to change are among the most difficult human undertakings, the very process of renewing and reconnecting – to ourselves and to God – is a gift that can fundamentally repair us, our communities, and society at large. In his annual discourses on repentance, Rabbi Aharon Lichtenstein zt”l set out to make the elusive path of teshuva more navigable.
Return and Renewal collects twelve of these public lectures, adapted for print by Michael S. Berger and Reuven Ziegler. In these essays, Rabbi Lichtenstein marshals a broad array of Jewish sources, along with classics of the Western tradition and his own sensitivity to the human condition, to examine the psychological, emotional, and spiritual elements of sin and repentance. By exploring the habits and impulses that may prevent enduring change or abet it, Return and Renewal provides a high-resolution map of our spiritual lives as we embark on our journeys of religious growth.