The month of Nisan is, traditionally, a month of renewal and hopefulness. In many Jewish communities it was the custom to not recite the usual Tachanun or supplication liturgy during this time. With this is mind I chose last week to plant a pear tree at Sanctuary to complete our Sephirot Garden of ten trees. Last year, during the pandemic, we, ironically, lost two fruit trees, the apple tree, to disease, and a new persimmon tree planted in the fall that was broken in half, most likely by deer. The fruit tree in the Sephirot Garden represents the fruitfulness of life and the manifestation of the Divine in the world as we know it.
The day I planted the pear tree was the day of the massacre in Atlanta. The pear tree was an Asian pear tree. I hadn’t made the connection until later.
And, then, just a couple of days ago another horrific sacrifice of life. Ten human lives. Ten reflections of the image of the Divine.
Again, and again, we are being challenged by the ills in our society. How do we respond? See action suggestions below.
In the midst of these tragedies and threats we need Pesach even more.
Let us take the lead from Mother Earth and renew ourselves. May our fire offerings for life, hope, peace and justice not be extinguished.
“…Thus, there shall be a constant fire kept burning on the altar, without being extinguished.” (Lev. 6:6)
For a meaningful and liberating Pesach, Reb David