“Beit Hillel says that the ‘new year for the trees’ is the 15th of Shevat – Tu B’Shvat.” In contemporary Israel, Tu B’Shvat is a sort of Jewish Arbor Day – a day of environmental awareness where trees are planted in celebration.
In the 16th century, the Kabbalists of Tzfat compiled a Tu B'Shvat seder, somewhat similar to the seder for Passover. It involves enjoying the fruits of the tree, particularly those native to the Land of Israel, and discusses philosophical and Kabbalistic concepts associated with the day. Among other things, the seder is a great way to appreciate the bounty that we so often take for granted, and to develop a good and generous eye for the world around us.
Tu BiShvat is also a good time to think about the special relationship between human beings and trees. In the book of Deuteronomy (20:19) it is written that “man is like a tree of the field”: The righteous shall flourish like the palm-tree; grow mighty like a cedar in Lebanon. (Psalms 92:13)
Remembering how similar we are, how dependent we are on each other, and how precious our relationship is, gives this special holiday a deeper meaning.
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Kosha Dillz Tu B'Shvat Hop
Featuring Ari Lesser & Produced by Kentron
Promoted for Tu B'Shevat by ReJews Recycling