This experientialassignment will help you learn about Mussar experientially, reflect on your experience, and discuss your findings.
First, choose one soul-trait (as Alan Morinis calls it; synonyms are middah, measure, value, and virtue) to focus on.
Second, use the Mussar Institute's "Accounting of the Soul/Cheshbon Ha'nefesh" worksheet to help you record your exploration of the soul-trait you chose. Completing the worksheet is required, but your worksheet is not going to be shared with the class. Your worksheet comprises your "data" for this assignment that you will use in Week 5's salon.
Working on your soul-trait for the week using the worksheet as well as one or two of the following practices:
daily yoga related to your soul-trait (You can browse the Brotman book here, here, and here. You can also explore Jewishyogaclasses in Los Angeles. I am not aware of any official Mussar yoga classes in L.A. yet, but you can bring your Mussar intentions to class with you and they would fit right in.)
recitation or chanting of the phrase related to your soul-trait;
daily discussion of your soul-trait work with a Mussar buddy;
adding a mitzvah (commandment, good deed) to your daily life related to your chosen soul-trait.
You may find it challenging to complete some of these exercises. That's okay! You should just keep trying. This practice is a process, not a goal that you achieve in a linear fashion.
At the conclusion of your week, reflect on your experience doing Mussar:
How did it feel to do the practices you chose?
What did you learn from doing these practices?
Would you recommend these practices to others, or consider continuing them yourself?