By Rabbi David Seidenberg
“I have set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between Me and the Earth.” (Genesis 9:13)
Millennia before Kermit the Frog sang about the Rainbow Connection, the very first Rainbow Day marked the connection between God and all animals. The biblical flood began on the 17th of the second month, exactly one lunar year and 10 days — or one complete solar year — before Noah, his family, and all the animals that were with them left the ark, on the 27th day of the second month. But just before they left, God made a covenant with them that there would never again be a flood of water to destroy life on Earth. And just as today we sign contracts with our signatures, God signed our covenant with a rainbow.
Rainbow Day, which falls on the 42nd day of the counting of the omer, and the day after Yom Yerushalayim — Jerusalem Day — is a time to celebrate the diversity of life on Earth, and to remember our role in God’s covenant. It is a time to remember that the first covenant was not with human beings but with all living things, and it’s a chance to reflect on the deep spiritual and religious meaning of diversity, creation and our role as part of Creation and partners with God. This is a special time in human civilization when we need to reflect on the rainbow covenant and our place in sustaining a world where sowing and reaping, cold and hot, summer and winter will not stop.
To see the Rainbow Day Curriculum http://jewcology.org/resources/Rainbow-Day/
Rabbi David Seidenberg is a theologian, dancer, and activist who teaches eco-Torah and Jewish spiritual songs through his website, Neohasid.org. He was ordained both by Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi and by the Jewish Theological Seminary, where he wrote his doctorate thesis on ecology and Kabbalah. NeoHasid.org is a member of the Green Hevra.
The Jewish Energy Guide presents a comprehensive Jewish approach to the challenges of energy security and climate change and offers a blueprint for the Jewish community to achieve a 14% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by September of 2014, which is the next Shmittah, or sabbatical, year in the Jewish calendar.
The Jewish Energy Guide is part of COEJL’s Jewish Energy Network, a collaborative effort with Jewcology’s Year of Action to engage Jews in energy action and advocacy. The Guide was created in partnership with the Green Zionist Alliance.
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