“Sacred Seasons of the Sacred Earth” is a series of four webinars focusing on the festivals of Hanukkah, Tu B’Shvat, and two sessions on Passover. We invite you to join with us. Below you will find first the facts and then the “Whys” beneath the facts.
WHO, WHAT, WHEN
Rabbi Arthur Waskow and Alanna Kleinman, a rabbinical student at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College and the Ira Silverman Memorial Intern at The Shalom Center, will explore these festivals and questions:
Hanukkah Webinar on Tues., Nov 13, 2018, 7-9 pm Eastern time
Hanukkah is the festival of lighting lights in a time of darkness. One of the legends about it is that its holiness involved conserving energy – making one day’s olive oil light up eight days. The Menorah at the heart of Hanukkah was designed by the Torah to be modeled on a living tree, as it is portrayed in the medieval graphic just above.
How could we use the eight days of Hanukkah to light our inner spirits in a dark time, and to light our whole society to heal our wounded Earth by conserving energy? Hanukkah itself begins December 2.
- Tu B’Shvat Webinar on Wed., Jan 9, 2019, 7-9pm Eastern time
Tu B’Shvat, the ReBirthDay of the trees after a winter of hibernation, is also seen as the ReBirthDay of the Tree of Life – the sacred impulse within us and all the world to grow and be more fruitful. How can we shape the evening and the day to benefit our own souls, the soul of our country, and the soul of our rejuvenated Earth? Tu B’Shvat begins the evening of Sunday, January 20, and ends the evening of Monday January 21. That Monday is also the Martin Luther King Birthday Holiday! Is there a connection between the two?
Passover Webinar Wed., Apr 3 & 10, 2019, 7-9pm Eastern time
Passover comes at the peak of Spring. It celebrates the birthing of lambs, new barley, a new people, and Freedom (which itself is a birthing of new possibilities, new creativity). We recall a Pharaoh who brought death on children and plagues – eco-disasters – on the Earth.
What does it mean to free ourselves today and heal the Earth? Passover begins Friday evening, April 19
Together we can make new meanings for these festivals. This webinar series will be interactive, drawing forth the insights of all who take part. In that way it will enrich the lives of each person and of the whole community of participants.
WHERE & HOW
We will meet by Zoom conference, making it possible by video for us to see each other face-to-face or by telephone. The Zoom information will appear when you register. We will record each session and send the video link a few days after the Webinar itself.
Each session will cost $18. If you register for all four now, the series will cost $62, a $10 discount.
Why are we doing this?
Because a great deal has changed in America, on Planet Earth, and in Jewish thought, practice, and creativity since Reb Arthur originally wrote and Bantam published his classic Seasons of Our Joy: A Modern Guide to the Jewish Festivals in 1981.
Indeed, in just the last few days the world’s scientists have intensified their warnings that we have at most a dozen years to prevent disruptions of human civilization far worse than the California wildfires and the Florida hurricanes that have torn at us.
How do we draw on our deepest wisdom to inspire far more commitment to act, to heal our Mother Earth from the wounds that she is suffering?
We need to strengthen both our interior spiritual gumption and menshlichkeit and our communal spiritual compassion. The Jewish festival spiral is itself rooted in the Earth, in its seasons of grief and joy and action, birth and covenant, fulfillment and seed-sowing. The festivals weave the inner and the outer into fringes of connection.
They are among the gifts that Judaism can bring into the efforts of all humanity to correct our own misdeeds toward Mother Earth. But the festivals can do this only if we draw from their reservoirs of wisdom into rivers of action.
Join us for this series. Register now!
Shalom, salaam, paz, peace -- Arthur & Alanna