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A selection of initiatives, blogs, resources and communities on Jewcology which focus on spirituality.


Blogs

Earth Etude for 18 Elul

A Broken Sewer Pipe by Maxine Lyons One might inquire-- How can a broken sewer pipe help elicit responses relevant to Rosh Hashana holiday themes? When our sewer pipe broke under our home directly affecting our front gardens and lawn, and a crew came in to excavate nine feet down to access it and repair it, fillers from the earth's bowel began to surface - tons of rubble, debris, clay, stones and brick. I felt incredulous, How can this be happening as we were adding final touches to our lawns and gardens in our front yard and simultaneously ...

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Earth Etude for 14 Elul

Elul Greening by Judith Feinstein Have we done the reparation so to take the consolation and digest it all and well? Have we psalms we want to hear releasing some for other's ears while disregarding somber prohets' words? Can we see Akiva's vision, crumbling Temple fox is running as a sign Moschaiach's coming or do we yet deny our state? Do we choose to not attend to what this month we must amends do so that we are then released from martyr's fate at our own hands. We do not ...

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Earth Etude for 13 Elul

Swimming on Our Backs by Rabbi Judy Kummer All week long, a challenge with a family member plagued me. I stewed over it, allowed it to twist my kishkes into tight knots and my body into a ship tossing on waves of wakefulness in nighttime. I even watched it tug at my mind and heart during long lake swims thru otherwise placid waters. Tears and fresh water mixed, a potent cocktail of sadness. And then, during one swim at dusk, as I flipped over onto my back to reach into back crawl, I looked up and saw the most glorious sunset ...

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Earth Etude for 12 Elul

Dirt and Teshuvah by Rabbi Howard A. Cohen One of my favorite lessons to teach when I take a group on a wilderness trip is the dirt method of cleaning up after a meal. It is very simple and effective but invariably elicits chuckles of surprise. After removing all big chunks of left over food by either disposing it in a fire or trash bag people are then instructed to go to the edge of camp and wipe their utensils with dirt and other bits of natural debris. What happens is that the small remaining bits of food particles attach to dirt and ...

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Earth Etude for 11 Elul

Maintaining the Climate by Lois Rosenthal “If you go by my statutes and keep My commands and do them, I shall give you rains in their season and the land will give its yield…” Lev 26:4 The ancient Israelites trusted G-d to maintain the seasons in a fixed and repeatable way. They had worked out their lunar/solar calendar and holidays based on planting/harvesting seasons. Droughts were certainly a constant worry, but timing of planting and harvest was consistent enough year after year to be considered fixed by G-d. Suppose they ...

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Earth Etude for 9 Elul

Return to the Land of Your Soul by Adina Allen In Genesis we read that God places Adam in the garden “to serve it and to guard it.” In the rabbinic imagination there are many possibilities for what this description could mean. It could mean that the first human was given the practical task of keeping the garden watered so that plants would grow, or perhaps of protecting the vegetation of the garden by keeping the animals out of it. However I think there may be another, more thrilling motive to explore in imagining why this task is the task ...

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Earth Etude for 4 Elul

Enfold me, Earth By Carol Reiman Enfold me, earth, Entwine your thick limbs With mine; Lift me up above Your blushing beauty, Opening me to your new day. Show me how to know you As we whisper in each other's ear-- Willow rustle, Sizzling spray upon the sand; How I meant to help, How I hurt you, How we can heal In easy forgiveness, How I can keep you as You keep me--whole. Dance in freedom, Moving together, None to crowd out Both our voices--yours and mine-- Gulls' cry, sudden thunder; Rushing ...

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Earth Etude for 3 Elul

The Earth Is Crying Out in Pain Rabbi Katy Z. Allen “The Earth is the Lord’s, and the fullness thereof.” (Ps. 24:1) The Earth is crying out in pain. Yet, its beauty and mystery shine forth, ever ready to calm us, inspire us, strengthen us, and remind us of our smallness in Creation. We walk in the woods and find wonder in the spring wildflowers. Eagerly we bite into the delicious bounty of the late summer harvest. In awe we gain inspiration from the night sky, a sudden and unexpected rainbow, a brilliant sunset. ...

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Earth Etudes for Elul

Rosh Chodesh for the month of Elul, 5772, lasts for two days. Saturday is the last day of the month of Av and Sunday is the first day of the month of Elul, and together they mark the beginning of a month-long period of reflection as we travel through the remaining days leading up to Rosh HaShanah, the New Year. Summer is still with us, and the hot, humid days of August often carry thunderstorms, but already the nights are coming earlier. The warm days and the early evenings convey a sense of urgency, for we know that the cooler days of autumn are not far ...

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New Interfaith Ecology Video “One Home”

The Interfaith Center for Sustainable Development based out of Jerusalem has recently released a new video entitled "One Home." This unique interfaith eco viral video features world religious leaders speaking out on environmental sustainability. Faith leaders including Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, the Dalai Lama, and others deliver a message of hope and inspiration on the importance of protecting the earth, our common home. Please share this video with your family, your friends, and your community and help promote a sustainable future! bit.ly/onehome1

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To the Stars and Back – Our Quest for Connection / Part 6 of 7

Another aspect of our connectedness is that we share with each other our need for each other. We can try to live “off the grid,” but it is not really in our genes to do so. Like those ants, we are social creatures. To live totally independently of all other human beings is not how we are programmed, and it takes a yeomen effort to make it happen. Just going to live in the woods isn’t truly getting away from others, not if we take even the smallest item with us or at any point in our seclusion need something we cannot find in the woods around us, ...

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This Blog Post was Inspired by the Internet Asifa

Last Friday, I listened to the Internet Asifa, a rally which – you may have heard – was organized by the Haredi Orthodox community in CitiField on May 20. I first heard about this event, of course, via facebook. There was a particular negative vibe to the posts about this on facebook. I personally saw posts ranging from that this was a “chillul Hashem” (a desecration of G-d’s name) to saying that it was a giant waste of time and resources. Here’s how Tablet Magazine represented it : This Sunday, there’ll be a sellout ...

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To the Stars and Back – Our Quest for Connection / Part 4 of 7

Related to whether or not to engage with others and with the world is the matter of how we engage. Part of a Talmudic sequence of stories related to seeking forgiveness offers some options. “When a certain person injured Rabbi Zera, [Rabbi Zera] would repeatedly pass before him and invite himself into his presence, so that the injurer would come and appease him.” Moshe Halbertal identifies Rabbi Zera’s graceful entrance into the presence of one who had injured him as an action worthy of emulation that created the conditions in which it was ...

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Researchers Find New Way To Create Low-Cost Solar Cells

  • June 3, 2012
  • Member since 2011

By newswise Photo by spanginator Newswise — Solar power must become more efficient and less expensive to compete with energy produced by fossil fuels. Silicon-based solar cells are the dominant technology in the field, but the widespread adoption of these cells has been slowed by their high costs. Solar cells that use inorganic nanocrystals or "quantum dots" could be a cheaper alternative, but they are generally less efficient at turning solar energy into electricity. Technion-Israel Institute of Technology researchers have now found a new ...

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To the Stars and Back – Our Quest for Connection / Part 3 of 7

Time walking the journey of life makes clear that managing in the world asks us to stand in the “breach,” in the tension, in the paradox between our individuality and our universality. And yet, the breach, the tension, and the paradox also ask us to stand between our own needs and the needs of those around us; between our finite physical selves and our minds and our spirits that reach beyond what we can actually do in the time and space we occupy; between our dreams, our hopes, our visions, and the reality of the details of daily living and of the ...

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Day 49 of the Omer

On this last day of counting the Omer, this seventh day of the sixth week, which gives us seven full weeks, we consider Malchut in Malchut - Leadership in Leadership, the ultimate in leadership. Tonight, or some clear night soon, I invite you to step outside, lie down on the ground on your back, and look up at the stars. When you do, you will see celestial bodies that have been where they are for billions of years. You will gaze at a night sky that people have been gazing at since the beginning of human kind. Perhaps you will see constellations. ...

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Soul Journeys Through Living Soil – at JMC Brooklyn

  • May 1, 2012
  • Member since 2011

Hi folks - I hope you'll check out this unique event happening in downtown Brooklyn. Click here for full event info. Join the Jewish Meditation Center of Brooklyn and Adamah for a teaching by Sarah Chandler (followed by our weekly sitting meditation at 8pm!) Soul Journeys Through Living Soil As we move through spring time and notice the trees bloom with flowers and green, we may miss out on the life force of activity within the soil below us. The interconnectedness of organisms, ions, roots, water and air ...

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Equity or the Flood: Two Visions of Justice

It is now seven weeks to Passover and the Passover foods are already for sale in my local supermarket. My family is already planning when to do our shopping and whom to invite to the seder. Like many Jewish families, we put a lot of time and preparations into this holiday because we want to make it special and different from the rest of the year as was done when we were children. But our preparations are not only about shopping, cooking, invites and the changeover of dishes. Every year, we spend at least a little time considering what we ...

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Enjoy the Ride

The other day I took my almost 7 year old son to the dentist. He’s a good sport about dentist visits – it’s amazing what a plastic toy at the end will do for a kid – so we were relaxed and chatting in the car on the way home. Like all kids, he asks a million questions, and like all moms, my job is to respond patiently in a way that helps him understand a little more about the world – while still recognizing the number of things he does not know. The chatting went something like this: “Mommy, why are the lights all red?&r...

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Tu B’Shevat Saplings

Dear Friends, Our cliffhanger (see part 1 here ) left us with the Tree of Life and the Tree of Knowledge firmly planted not within Tu B’Shevat, but within the middle of Mi Chamocha our blessing-song for redemption. Mi Chamocha is invoked in every prayer service directly after the Shema. We’ll begin by trying to make sense of this very old word, redemption, and then offer some ideas why Reb Elimelech of Grodzisk (d. 1892) might have placed his wisdom of the two trees there. Ready to wade in the water? As we get our toes wet, let’s first ...

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