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A selection of initiatives, blogs, resources and communities on Jewcology intended for use by lay leaders.


Blogs

Earth Etude for Elul 3 – Let it Rest

Earth Etude for Elul 3 - Let It Rest by Carol Reiman Let it rest-- the land that we have worked so hard, the grassy fare for geese now taken by the high tech labs, the water diverted far away to leave the old spot bare, the day diminished by our dense cramming, electronics robbing our eyes of moisture...   Let it rest-- the fish sleep still near the bottom, the standing horse relaxes muscles, the cat stretches and curls...   Let it rest-- the yawn exchanges stale air for fresh, cells grow, the blood flows with its passengers for new destinations, ...

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Earth Etudes for Elul – An Introduction and Etude 1

This evening the month of Elul begins, the month that leads us up to the first day of the new year, Rosh HaShanah 5775. The sun rises and sets, again and again, and with each cycle we get a day older, with each cycle the world brings pain and joy, anger and delight, frustration and calm, fear and trust. Soon those days will have added up, and we will be a year older than the last time we ate apples and honey together. We ask: How have I changed? What have I done? What do I wish I had done? What do I hope to do in the future? How has the world changed? How did I...

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Spread over all of us the Sukkah of shalom, salaam, paz, peace!

Can our Sukkot become not only symbols but peacemaking sanctuaries for both "adam" and "adamah"? As we enter the Shmita / Sabbatical Year, we may be asking what its content might be. We can begin, just a few days before Rosh Hashanah, joining the several dozen Jewish organizations that will take part in the People’s Climate March in New York City, Sunday Septembr 21, beginning at 11:30 am. Then on Rosh Hashanah (which can mean “New Year” or “Start of Transformation”), we might celebrate what the tradition sees ...

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Are There Special Foods to Welcome Shmita?

Rabbi Nina Beth Cardin has suggested that for the Erev Rosh Hashanah meal which this year, on Wednesday evening September 24, begins the Shmita Year of Shabbat Shabbaton, we have a seder plate, with seven items (marking the seven-ness of Shmita). What might these seven be? Already nominated: bread (like challah for Shabbat, should this be a “woven” bread? round, for the cycles, as is a traditional Rosh Hashanah challah? how about woven into seven spirals?), an apple, honey, wine, pomegranates. What might the others be, and ...

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History of the Kayamut Sustainability Circle

The Kayamut Sustainability Circle in Silver, Spring, MD was formed in 2010, and led by a team of local Torah-based Jewish environmentalists who met regularly to learn about community opportunities for environmental action. Over three years, members met local chickens, explored invasive plants, experimented with composting, learned what's recyclable in Montgomery County, and much, much more. We're most proud of the work done on the Maryland Offshore Wind Power campaign, where our shared activism and concern influenced Delegate Ben Kramer to support wind power ...

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70+ Rabbinic Call to Move Our Money to Protect Our Planet

Dear chevra, By April 30, 2014, more than 70 Rabbis and other Jewish spiritual leaders have signed this Call. Now we appeal to all members of the Jewish community to join in this effort. To do so, please click to: <https://theshalomcenter.org/civicrm/petition/sign?sid=11&reset=1> We — Rabbis, Cantors, and other Jewish spiritual leaders — call upon Jewish households, congregations, seminaries, communal and denominational bodies, and other institutions: Move Our Money to Protect Our Planet. In the ancient tradition ...

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Speaking Out Faithfully: A Green Sheep Webinar from Interfaith Power and Light

On Thursday night, April 24, I had the privilege of participating in the Green Sheep Webinar for the Interfaith Power & Light chapter in my region (DC, MD, NoVA). The theme of the webinar was “Speaking Out, Faithfully,” and -- consistent with our Year of Jewish Policy Engagement on the Environment -- the focus was on raising our voices together as people of faith to make a difference in environmental advocacy. One of the lovely things about being on an interfaith webinar is getting to interact with a group of people with shared values and different ...

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Earth Day Every Day – Join a Webinar!

Tuesday April 22nd marked the 44th annual Earth Day! What will you do this year to protect our planet? Join the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism (the RAC) in commemorating Earth Day with an online information session on how to successfully create a green “culture” in your congregation. How do we make our environmental efforts an integral part of the culture of our congregational communities? How do we align our actions with our Jewish beliefs of environmental stewardship? Our synagogues have the potential to model environmental behavior and ...

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Environmental Tip of the Week: Replace one or more store-bought, chemical-filled body-care products with something homemade and natural!

Cross posted in Environmental Tip of the Week This is a great resource to get you started: http://www.jewcology.org/content/view/Do-It-Yourself-Body-Care-for-the-New-Year

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The End of the Year of Action

It's the end of the Year of Action! During the last twelve months, Jewcology has been pleased to host and share 24 actions to help you save energy and reduce food waste. Together, our community has taken action and saved resources, and demonstrated the difference we can make together! It's not too late to report your actions on Jewcology so that we can show the full impact of the difference we've made. In honor of Tu b'Shevat, please report your actions on your individualized savings page during the month of Shevat! **Can't access this page? Simply log in to ...

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Uplifting People and Planet

Exciting news! Just in time for Tu b’Shevat, Canfei Nesharim and Jewcology are proud to announce the launch of a new ebook exploring traditional Jewish teachings on the environment, Uplifting People and Planet: Eighteen Essential Jewish Lessons on the Environment, edited by Rabbi Yonatan Neril and Evonne Marzouk. This ebook is the most comprehensive study in English of how Jewish traditional sources teach us to protect our natural resources and preserve the environment. From food to trees, energy to water, wealth to biodiversity, the book studies eighteen ...

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Announcing the Year of Jewish Policy Engagement on the Environment

Sign up here to become a partner in bringing the Year of Engagement to your Jewish community. Jewcology is partnering with the Coalition on the Environment and Jewish Life in 2014 for a Year of Jewish Policy Engagement on the Environment. This coming year, you’ll have the opportunity to: Get to know your elected representatives Engage your community to advocate for meaningful environmental change Learn about key opportunities to make a difference Act at the critical moment Watch the video to learn more about our ...

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Environmental Tip of the Week: Apology and this week’s tip: Dumpster Adventures

http://environmentaltip.blogspot.com/2013/12/apology-and-this-weeks-tip-dumpster.html I'm not blogging much lately due to certain matters going on in my life. Sorry, I know this is supposed to be a weekly post but life happens.... Anyway, here's this week's tip. This applies if you live in a place where there's a central dumpster where people dump their garbage: When you take out the garbage, keep your eyes open for things that might not really be garbage but perhaps someone was just trying to get rid of the item without it occurring to them that maybe someone else could ...

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Shmita Today: From Farm to Hypertech

Our society is more and more deeply concerned that intrusive human action toward the Earth is turning into a weapon endangering Humanity itself as well as the earthy web of life. Is this danger new, or is it an extension of a long-felt weakness arising from a strength too far? Torah warns against overworking the earth, as well as overworking ourselves and each other. It provides that not only every seventh day but every seventh year is to be a time to pause from working. The seventh year is to be Shabbat Shabbaton, Restfulness to the exponential power of Restfulne...

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Earth Etude for 24 Elul

MEDITATION on ELUL by Richard H. Schwartz Elul is here. It represents an opportunity for heightened introspection, a chance to consider teshuva, changes in our lives, before the “Days of Awe,” the days of judgment, the “High holidays of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. The shofar is blown every morning (except on Shabbat) in synagogues during the month of Elul to awaken us from slumber, to remind us to consider where we are in our lives and to urge us to consider positive changes. How should we respond to Elul today? How should we ...

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Tell Your Story and Motivate Your Community!

"You have to claim authorship of your own story and learn to tell it to others so that they can understand, appreciate, and share the values that move you to act, because it may move them to act as well." (Marshall Ganz, developer of the Public Narrative training) Jewcology is partnering with the Teva Seminar on Jewish Environmental Education to bring back our engaging and effective Public Narrative Leadership Training. In 2011, nearly 50 Jewish environmental leaders were empowered to tell their stories and the stories of their communities, and to ...

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Cleaning and Greening Our “House” for Passover

In the days before Passover, Jews around the world traditionally spend time cleaning and checking our homes for “chametz” – leavened foods forbidden during the holiday. It is also traditionally a time for soul searching, for clearing out old “stuff” and ways of doing things. During this season of renewal, we at Teva Ivri are finding ways to check not only our homes but also our “houses of prayer.” Along with the Council for a Beautiful Israeland Green Now, Teva Ivri has just announced the first “Greenest ...

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A Jewish Environmental Proclamation

When God created the first human beings, God led them around the Garden of Eden and said: “Look at my works! See how beautiful they are – how excellent! For your sake I created them all. See to it that you do not spoil and destroy My world; for if you do, there will be no one else to repair it. - Midrash Kohelet Rabbah 1 (on Ecclesiastes 7:13) We are witnessing a time in which the future of the planet is at stake. The climate crisis is escalating, and it is upon each one of us to do what we can to change course. In the Torah it is ...

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Last Day to Order Free Haggadot

Good Chodesh! Today is Rosh Chodesh Shevat; according to Beit Shammai, THIS is the new year of the trees! In any case, we wish you a good and green new month. Tu b'Shevat is in just two weeks, on Tuesday-Wednesday February 7-8! Today is the final deadline for orders of free haggadot this year. You can order up to 25 Haggadot absolutely free by posting your request on our facebook page. Please post the number of haggadot you are requesting, your location, and the community where the materials will be ...

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Great Video – Get Ready for Tree B’Earthday!

The trees are God's great alphabet: With them He writes in shining green Across the world His thoughts serene. ~Leonora Speyer

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