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January 20, 1989 - Image 138

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1989-01-20

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

lb B'Shevat: A
Celebration of Trees

Continued from Page L-1

cedars and cypresses were cut and
land of Israel, the trees were
woven together to form their
replenished.
The three months before Shevat
chuppah.
Each year many Israelis,
— Cheshvan, Kislev, Tevet — are
particularly children, plant trees on
months when there is much rain.
the sand dunes, in the marshes, or
The rains lessen in Shevat; the sun
wherever they are needed. They are
comes out. And the sap begins to
fulfilling the prophecy of Isaiah:
rise in the fruit trees. This is a time
for rejoicing; a time for celebrating
They shall build up the old ruins.
the New Year of Trees — Rosh
They shall raise up what was
Hashanah Leilanot. It falls on the
destroyed.
15th day of Shevat; it is called
They shall make the destroyed cities
Hamishah Asar B'Shevat, or Tu
new,
B'Shevat. (The Hebrew letters tet (9)
And rebuild the ruins of many
and vav (6), which spell Tu, add up
generations.
to 15.) Six weeks after the winter
This year, more than ever
holiday, Chanukah, it is time to look
before, the holiday of Tu B'Shevat
forward to the coming of spring.
will be celebrated by almost every
Just as the tree is different from
resident in the Land of Israel and
all other growing things, so is its
supported by Diaspora Jewry. The
holiday different from all other
horrific forest fires, which decimated
Jewish holidays. Tu B'Shevat is not
35,000
acres of land, have
mentioned in the Bible. There are
demonstrated
the need to replant
no special prayers for Tu B'Shevat
trees at a rate of 10 trees for every
in the prayerbook. There are no
one destroyed.
special laws for observing Tu
Israelis — men, women and
B'Shevat. It is almost just another
children — will be physically
day in the calendar. Almost, but not
planting at least one tree per
really, for it is the day when we get
person. Jews in the Diaspora are
to show our love not only for the
being asked to help support in this
trees but for the Land of Israel. So
time of emergency by purchasing as
there are special customs for
many trees as they possibly can.
celebrating this day, some of them
On Tu B'Shevat, we celebrate
quite new.
the New Year of the Trees and our
One of the oldest customs is
own belief in the future of the world.
mentioned in the Talmud. It says
On Tu B'Shevat, tied so closely to
that on Tu B'Shevat, a young cedar
Israel and its feasts, we celebrate
was planted for every boy born
the unbreakable bonds between
during the year; a young cypress
was planted for every girl. When the Jews everywhere and the Land of
Israel. On Tu B'Shevat we mark the
young people grew up and came to
oneness
of the Jewish people.
be married, branches from their

Project For Tu B'Shevat

1.

Place a sweet potato
with toothpicks in a jar or
tall glass, so just its tip
is in water.

2.

Keep it in a sunny place.
It takes about two weeks
for sprouts to appear.
Soon a vine will grow.

41 - _4,6 Special Importance
Of Israel's Trees

In recent months there have
been a number of fires set by Arabs
to intentionally destroy large forests
in Israel. Why do you think these
people have chosen to destroy
Israel's trees?
In some South American
countries, such as Brazil, lush rain
forests cover much of the land.
Native South Americans are cutting
down massive amounts of the
tropical trees which fill these jungle

sechti ff e- m

THE JEWISH NEWS

20300 Civic Center Drive
Suite 240
Southfield, Michigan 48076
January 20, 1988
Associate Publisher Arthur M. Horwitz
News Editor Heidi Press
Jewish Experiences for Families
Adviser Harlene W. Appleman
Illustrator Neil Beckman

L-2

FRIDAY, JANUARY 20, 1989

areas in order to sell the wood for
commercial use. Why do you think
people who care about the
environment of planet earth are very
concerned about this?
Weekly Torah Portion —
Beshalach, The Redemption from
Egypt.
God allows the children of
Israel to escape the hand of
Pharaoh by causing the Red Sea to
part so they could escape. Yet God
causes the sea to close over the
pursuing Egyptians which kills every
last one of them. The children of
Israel are awe-struck and
overwhelmed at the power of God.
Why then do we see time and again
following this great miracle, their
lack of faith in the disobedience to
Moses, the servant of God?

—Submitted by
Dr. Margaret S. Eichner,
Headmaster, Yavneh Adademy-
The Reform Jewish Day School
of Metropolitan Detroit

3.

You may want to tack
string to the window
frame for the vines to
grow on.

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