Earth Etude for Elul 25: For the Land in Not Mine

by Rabbi Louis Polisson

And the land shall not be sold for ever; for the land is mine;

for you are strangers and sojourners with me1


And now we are learning


That the Land belongs to No One,

To the One with No End

For the earth was confusion and chaos2


And we too have become

wild and waste

Human beings from the earth

Human beings, full of harm3

for the earth

Every day


But our fate is not sealed

There is hope

There is choice

There is justice4

And there is return, an answer, repentance


The time to come close

has drawn near

The season of Elul

The time of “we are our Beloved’s,

and our Beloved’s is ours”

At the end of this Year of Release

There is an opportunity

There is a new year

There is time to repair the world

Through the sovereignty of the Almighty, through presence of the Supreme Mighty Mother

There is time to say: Here I am

For we are Her People and She is our Beloved5


Not for us, not ours

Is the Land

Not yours and not mine


For Her Own Self



strangers and sojourners are we

with Her


Both strangers

and human beings from the earth

We are connected and responsible

From the worm in the ground

to the fish of the sea

From the tiniest grain of sand

to the air in the sky


Together we must recognize and lead6 and pray and act

So that She might grant in our hearts

The ability to understand, to be aware, to listen and to hear7

To learn and to teach8

To serve her and to protect her


The Garden of Eden, where is it?9

In the earth.


And not mine

  1. Leviticus 25:23
  2. Genesis 1:2; translation after Everett Fox, cf.
  3. Genesis 6:5
  4. Genesis Rabbah 26:6
  5. Ki Anu Amekha, from the Liturgy for Yom Kippur
  6. Mi Khamokha, Shaḥarit (Morning) and Ma’ariv (Evening) Liturgy
  7.  Ahavah Rabbah, Shaḥarit (Morning) Liturgy
  8. Genesis 2:15
  9. Sefer Ha-Bahir, II:31

Louis Polisson is a musician and rabbi, ordained by the Jewish Theological Seminary in 2018, where he also earned an MA in Jewish Thought focusing on Kabbalah and Hasidut. He currently serves as Rabbi of Congregation Or Atid of Wayland, Massachusetts. He and his wife Gabriella Feingold released an album of original Jewish and nature-based spiritual folk music in November 2018 – listen at

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