Trees Subscribe

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


Blogs

Shabbat (Haaretz) Shalom

Renewed themes in the commandment of the shmita, in light of the climate crisis This year 5782 is a shmita year - a special period in the Hebrew calendar that recurs once every seven years. This year we face a harsh reality - the IPPC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) report published in early August claims that the climate crisis is already here and directly linked to humanity’s treatment of our natural resources. In recent months, multiple natural disasters occurred around the world, further stressing the urgency of the matter. Add to that the Covid-19 ...

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Earth Etude for Elul 29: At the Hoh~A Rainforest in the Pacific Northwest

by Thea Iberall Hoh Rainforest on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State The Amazon Rainforest is the most biodiverse region on Earth and provides shelter to three million species of plants and animals. Billions of trees absorb tons of carbon dioxide every year and produce 20% of earth’s oxygen. It’s been called the Lungs of the Earth. But I read something most disturbing. The Amazon rainforest is now emitting about a billion tons of carbon dioxide a year. From its role as a carbon sink, the lungs of the Earth have become a carbon source. ...

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Earth Etude for Elul 22: Healing in Nature and Helping Nature Heal

by Joan Rachlin It has been just over 17 months since my husband suffered a stroke. It wasn’t just our lives that changed that day, though, as March 11, 2020 was also the day that Boston went into lockdown in an effort to stem the spread of Covid-19. We therefore found ourselves living in a bubble within a bubble and rehab services were consequently hard to find. All of the outpatient clinics were closed and home care was limited. In this “timing is everything world,” my husband’s rehab was slowed down because the world had turned upside down. We drove ...

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Earth Etude for Elul 21: Tikkun Olam and Climate Change

by Michael Garry Tikkun olam, which in Hebrew means “repair of the world,” has always been a guiding principle of the Jewish people, one that we teach our children and try to practice in our everyday lives.  In the modern era, tikkun olam means that Jews bear responsibility not only for their own moral, spiritual, and material welfare, but also for the welfare of society at large. It is well known that the welfare of the planet is now threatened by an environmental crisis called climate change, caused by unchecked emissions of carbon dioxide from ...

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Earth Etude for Elul 16: Lessons Learned from my Garden

by Maxine Lyons Reflecting on my connection to t’shuvah means returning more mindfully to positive words and actions and performing mitzvot - commandments. T’shuvah also includes recognizing our connection to the earth, and for me, learning what my garden has to teach me. In a short book, Don't Throw in the Trowel, the author quips, "a garden is a sublime lesson in the unity of humans and nature.” A good garden to me is one that is well planned and cared for, and I am grateful to the Earth’s wisdom and resilience to provide the basis for ...

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Earth Etude for Elul 14: Turkey Tails and Teshuvah

by Rabbi Marisa Elana James In the park near my house is a large tree that fell last winter, the trunk slowly falling into decay thanks to four seasons of sun and rain and snow and wind slowly transitioning it back to the soil. When I pass it on walks, I always stop to see what’s new on the slowly-rotting trunk, because I’ve learned that it’s just as beautiful as the living, flowering trees that surround it. Mushrooms can grow incredibly fast, seemingly appearing from one day to the next, helping break down dead wood while taking nourishment from it. And ...

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Earth Etude for Elul 8: Not What I Want

by Rabbi Benjamin Weiner On the road to the farmstore in my electric car, the baby starting to doze in her safety seat, and the man in his cold British tones, explaining to the listeners an inexorable future of unmanageable heat, and the hostess says: I’m sorry, but that’s all the time we have, and she moves on to the new war in Afghanistan. ~ In the mornings, when I wake too early, and hear the sound of cars on the highway by my door, I lie as still as possible, willing the fixity I ...

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Earth Etude for Elul 7: Trees from my travels spell hope for civilization

by Susie Davidson Desert trees in Los Cerillos, New Mexico Trees by the Mississippi River in Burlington IowaTrees with a red bush accent in Yorba Linda, CaliforniaTrees on a red rock in the American Southwest When people admire my frequent traveling, I always say yes, but it's budget travel. "But that's the best way to really see places," they usually respond. It's true. Not only do I get to mingle with locals and walk all over, but on buses and trains, you see the outer landscapes. You see the fields, the hills, the bodies of water, the crops and the ...

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Honors thesis on the beginnings of Jewish environmental and vegetarian activism in the 1970s and 1980s

Renewing and Recycling: The Formation of American Jewish Environmentalism in the 1970s and 1980s Gabrielle Plotkin Advisor: Keith Woodhouse B.A. Thesis for Honors in History Northwestern University May 3, 2021 ii Abstract Few environmental historians have considered how American Jews interacted with the postwar environmental movement. Those that have, often characterize American Jews as “urban” and separate from nature. However, I demonstrate that American Jewry’s involvement in left-leaning politics and inclination to both ...

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Tu Bishvat Tu Tu Tu Tu with Ms. Eve baby shark tune !

  • February 3, 2021
  • Member since 2021

Tu Bishvat Tu Tu Tu Tu with Ms. Eve baby shark tune ! Join Ms. Eve 🌟 and let's get ready to celebrate Tu BiShvat 🍃🌳🌺 singing and moving to the tune of baby shark in English, Hebrew, and Spanish! Únete a Ms. Eve y recibe Tu BiShvat 🌱🌲🌻 cantando en español, hebreo e inglés! https://youtu.be/LAlolqGM7jk

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Jerusalem Post writeup of my Tu Bishvat activities

■ REGULAR READERS of The Jerusalem Post may have last Friday read the review of the latest book by Richard Schwartz, PhD, Vegan Revolution: Saving Our World, Revitalizing Judaism. Just in time for Tu Bishvat which is a celebration of nature and its bounty, Schwartz has initiated an international campaign to “Celebrate Tu Bishvat as if Global Survival Matters.” A fervent vegan, Schwartz believes that Tu Bishvat, the most vegan and the most environmental Jewish holiday, should become a Jewish Earth Day and that Tu Bishvat Seders should be used, among other ...

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Article in the next issue of the Jerusalem Report about my Tu Bishvat activities

Celebrating Tu Bishvat as if global survival matters By Abigail Klein Leichman TU BISHVAT, the Jewish new year for trees– beginning this year at sundown on January 27 – has become a sort of Jewish Earth Daycomplete with its own Seder celebrating the produce and wines of the Land of Israel. For environmental and vegan activist Prof. Richard H. Schwartz, Tu Bishvat presents a perfect opportunity to promote plant-based diets and environmental stewardship as expressions of traditional Jewish values. The retired college professor plans to lead a Tu Bishvat ...

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You are cordially invited to a Tu Bishvat Seder by zoom

Shalom, At a time when the world is approaching a climate catastrophe and other environmental threats, it is time to celebrate Tu Bishvat, the most environmental Jewish holiday, as if global survival matters, and to start treating Tu Bishvat as a Jewish Earth Day. Therefore, I will be facilitating four Tu Bishvat seders this year on Tu Bishvat, which starts on January 27 this year: One at the retirement village, Protea Hills, where my wife and I now live; One for the retirees group at the Young Israel of Staten Island, my former synagogue in the US; O...

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My Eight Articles Related to Tu Bishvat

Below are my 8 articles related to Tu Bishvat. Their titles are: 1. Why Is This Night Different: Thoughts on Tu B’Shvat 2. Tu B'Shvat and Vegetarianism and Veganism 3. Preserving the Sacred Environment: A Religious Imperative – A Tu Bishvat Message 4. Lessons From Trees: a Tu Bishvat Message 5. Celebrating Tu Bishvat as if Environmental Sustainability Matters  6. Lessons From Trees that Can Help Heal Our Imperilled Planet 7. For Tu Bishvat: 36 Jewish Quotations About Trees 8. Questions That Can Be Considered At a Tu ...

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Get Used to Wearing Masks.

by Rabbi Dr. Eric Lankin Get Used to Wearing Masks. (courtesy of the United Nations). I am afraid that we will be wearing masks for a long time to come. And it won’t be solely because of a viral pandemic. Soon it may be because of the air quality of our planet. There is a clear scientific consensus on a human-driven warming of the earth, with carbon-based pollution released in the environment as the major contributor. As shown by data from NASA and NOAA, the last few decades have seen a sharp spike in global average temperature, and the increase of carbon-...

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It’s time to go hug a tree!

The month of Nisan has arrived - it's time to go hug a tree! The month of Nisan began the evening of April 1, in the midst of the welcoming blossoms of springtime in Israel. This month also comes in the midst of the "Coronavirus crisis," as we are asked to shut ourselves in our homes instead of going outside and enjoying all that beauty of nature. Birkat Ha'Ilanot (Blessing for the Blossoming Trees), the mitzvah that is observed during the days of Nisan, reminds us that even in our own backyards (or our neighbors’ yard) we can find nature that is full of blessing. ...

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Ten Reasons Jews Should Consider Becoming a Vegetarian or a Vegan

As president of Jewish Veg, formerly Jewish Vegetarians of North America, and author of three editions of Judaism and Vegetarianism and over 250 related articles online, I very respectfully present the following reasons Jews should very seriously consider eliminating, or at least sharply reducing, your consumption of meat and other animal-based foods:

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Earth Etude for Elul 8 –A Year of Travel, A Year of Wonder

by Susie Davidson Photos (from top left clockwise): Louisiana Bayou from Amtrak; Maine foliage; Hills of Mexico, Del Rio Texas; Susie Davidson at El Paso Crossing; Banyan tree, Miami, FL. ~ Over the past year, I've had many unforgettable experiences in different countries and regions, within amazing, varied landscapes. There is nothing like discovering and living in a new environment. The languages, cultures, geography, and people are so different. However, it is within these strange surroundings that I have conversely noticed what is similar. There are common ...

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Earth Etude for Elul 7 — To Everything There is A Season

by Maxine Lyons ~ Growth takes many forms and like other Jewish seekers, I rely on the life-cycle events to provide a framework for growth, celebrating nature and new life, knowing that to everything there is a season and a time for every purpose under heaven. I started this year’s Elul preparation in June, with conscious gratitude for the experience of becoming a grandmother for the first time in my 70’s and ready to welcome a second grandbaby due to arrive before Rosh Hashanah. Through my work as a professional educator with older adults for several ...

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Earth Etude for Elul 6 — God I Am Your Sapling

by Nakhie Faynshteyn ~ God I am your sapling Let me take in your sunlightso that I may nourish my leavesAnd grow vibrant and green Let me take in your rainsand let them soak into my roots beneath the ground I will be nimble and bendMy branches will stretch and sprout budsWhile my roots hold me firm and planted God I am your sapling Nakhie Faynshteyn is a first generation immigrant from Odessa, Ukraine who lives in the Fenway area in Boston. He is as climate and social justice activist working with the Sunrise Movement, Kavod and Boston Workmen’s Circle ...

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