Blog post by Joshua Boydstun, Jewish Farm School Rabbinic Intern ----------------------------------------------------------- As a rabbinical student, I spend a lot of time thinking and talking about metaphorical “roots”: What is “the root of an idea”? Are texts and traditions “rooted” in a particular time or place? Is it dangerous to be “ro... read more.
The thirteenth topic in the Year of Jewish Learning on the Environment, We are How We Eat: A Jewish Approach to Food and Sustainability released! Rebbe Nachman of Breslov identifies the desire for food and drink as the central desire of the human being, and the one from which other desires emanate. In Rabbi Tzadok Hacohen’s “A Treatise on Eating,” he cit... read more.
The Twelfth topic in the Year of Jewish Learning on the Environment, Genesis and Human Stewardship of the Earth, has just been released! In the first chapter of Genesis, twice in three verses, G-d speaks of humans ruling over other living beings. In the second instance, after creating Adam and Eve, G-d blesses them, saying "Be fruitful and multiply, fill the earth and subdue ... read more.
The eleventh topic in the Year of Jewish Learning on the Environment, Praying for a Sustainable World, has just been released! Today’s environmental movement seems to focus strongly on doing. There are things to buy, actions to take, petitions to sign, policies to advocate. It is rare for environmentalists to think of prayer as a tool for change. Many people in today... read more.
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... read more.
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 Moschaiac... read more.
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 mi... read more.
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... read more.
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 ... read more.
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 p... read more.