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Eco-Judaism ~ We were a People of the Land before a People of the Book
The Little Minyan strives to work in harmony with the environment in all that we do. It is not only in our hearts and on our lips in prayer, but in our action. We bring our own plates and cutlery to many potlucks and use compostable products. The foods we share are often from backyards, Farmer's Markets, or local CSAs. We often joke that we may not all be sure we believe in G!d, but we all believe in actively caring for the Earth.
Please consider bringing your own mug to an oneg Shabbat or finding other small and large ways to live the Jewish value of bal tashchit (do not waste or destroy). So many of our contemporary environmental problems revolve around the issue of waste production and disposal. The average person produces about 4 pounds of waste each and every day. Bal tashchit is a response to this modern problem lies at the heart of our Jewish wisdom tradition (from Biblical times to the present day).
It was a common practice in times of old for invading armies to demoralize their enemy by "slash and burn" tactics, literally wiping out orchards, vineyards and fields. Never was this practice tolerated by Jewish tradition. More importantly, this prohibition does not just apply in time of warfare. (D'varim/Deuteronomy 20:19-20)
Category Archives: Reb Zalman
During the Hebrew month of Elul ~ the last cycle of the moon before we enter a new year through the gates of the Yamim Nora’im (Days of Awe) ~ Jewish practice is to do cheshbon ha’nefesh (a soul accounting). This opportunity is … Continue reading
The ritual sacrifice chronicled in the book of Leviticus/Vayikra could turn many of us (so removed from the meat that magically appears on our tables) into vegetarians, especially if we were to construct in our minds a big-screen, motion picture (a … Continue reading
This week’s Torah portion, in which we experience revelation at Sinai, is named for Moshe’s father-in-law, Yitro (Jethro). Yitro wasn’t a member of b’nei Yisrael/the children of Israel. On the contrary, he was a priest of Midian, which means that Moshe … Continue reading
As we enter 2015, we have an opportunity to look back and look ahead at the same time, to take stock, count our blessings, let go of disappointments, to reorient and re-aim. In Hebrew, we call this process t’shuvah (returning) and … Continue reading
Teach Us to Treasure Each Day ~ Limnot Yameinu ~ In Deep Appreciation of Reb Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, z”l
Here in central Ohio, we are in the midst of unseasonably mild and gloriously sunny days, further blessed by low humidity and gentle breezes. I am humming a new* tune that Rabbi (and gifted cellist, I am compelled to add) … Continue reading