Makor Or: A Center for Jewish Meditation

Location(s) San Francisco
Type(s) Other
Affiliation Independent


MAKOR OR offers Full-Day Sunday silent meditation retreats, Shabbatons, Intensive Practice Periods, and weekly meditation sessions.


March 18th Pesach Retreat 2018
June 3rd Summer and Psalms 2018
Aug. 19th High Holidays Retreat 2018
Nov. 4th Sunday Retreat 2018
Dec. 9th Hanukkah Retreat 2018

For more information, or to register for a retreat, please email:

Founded in January 2000 by the late Rabbi Alan Lew z"l and Norman Fischer, the purpose of Makor Or is to provide an opening to Jewish spiritual practice through meditation. No knowledge of meditation, Jewish practice, or Hebrew is required. All are welcome. Makor Or offers weekly meditation sessions, retreats, and Intensives.

NORMAN FISCHER is co-founder, with Rabbi Alan Lew(z"l), and spiritual leader of Makor Or. He is also a Zen master, founder of Everyday Zen and a poet. His books include Jerusalem Moonlight, Taking Our Places, Sailing Home, and Question/Places/Voices/Seasons.

RABBI DOROTHY A. RICHMAN serves as rabbi of Makor Or. She is a Master Educator at Kevah leading Torah study groups, teaches widely in the Bay Area and leads a weekly East Bay Jewish meditation session. She has served as Rabbi at Berkeley Hillel, Sha'ar Zahav, and Congregation Beth Sholom with her mentor Rabbi Alan Lew.

Thursdays from 8:00-8:50 at the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco, 3200 California St. (near Presidio), SF.

This session includes sitting and walking meditation, chanting (chant sheets provided) and standing silent prayer.

The meditation sessions are led by the Director of Makor Or, Ellen Shireman, who was a student of Rabbi Lew's for many years, or other senior students. These sessions are free and open to the public. (Please refrain from wearing scented products.)

RETREATS: Full-Day Sunday Retreats are day-long and held 5-6 times a year. They are led by Makor Or co-founder Norman Fischer and Rabbi Dorothy Richman. Retreats include periods of silent sitting and walking meditation, chanted prayer services, and Jewish teachings. A lunch break is provided.

INTENSIVE PRACTICE PERIODS: Are offered at Pesach and the High Holy Days. These 3-4 weeks of concentrated spiritual practice include a commitment to weekly meditation sessions, classes, a one-day retreat, and a one-on-one discussion with spiritual leader, Norman Fischer.

The 2018 High Holidays Intensive will begin Aug.7th.

To register for the Intensive Practice Period please email Makor Or Director Ellen Shireman:

To be added to the Makor Or mailing list and more information, please email:

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