One of the quotes that is repeated the most around the holiday of Tu Bishvat (the “New Year of the Trees) is, “Because Man is like a tree in the forest” (Deuteronomy 20:19). Rabbis in every generation have tried to explain that meaning-rich comparison, and many see that quote at the root (so to speak) of Judaism’s approach to stewardship of the Earth.
But can a tree be compared not to an individual person, but an entire people?Read more
It takes just 13 seconds to chop down a tree with an ax. If you must know, New Zealander David Bolstad holds the world record of “underhand chop” at 12.28 seconds. With a mechanical saw, which is how most chopping occurs these days, it takes about half that (and the record for that is 5.085 seconds, held by American Matt Bush).Read more
Stav Harari and Dean Shoshani, both 25, had just started their lives together in a new apartment in the colorful Hatikvah Quarter in South Tel Aviv. Dean was ecstatic, telling his sister that “my dream is coming true every day.”Read more
Antisemites think Jews cause everything bad. We’re to blame for capitalism and communism, ethnocentric nationalism and rootless globalism, and more. But I’m disappointed at their lack of creativity, because there’s one thing they haven’t yet accused us of: causing climate change and environmental catastrophe.
And the fact is, they’d have a kernel of a point if they did.Read more
Our obligations extend to both past and future.
Lake Valencia in Venezuela was once a beautiful place. Nestled among mountains and sierras, and blessed by a humid and temperate climate, it developed a rich ecosystem that had sustained countless plants and animals, as well as human tribal societies.Read more