Tu B’Shevat — the 15th of the Hebrew month of Shevat, happening this Friday night and Shabbat — is known as the “New Year for Trees.” Naturally this would be a time for trees to engage in soul-searching — the same way people do on Rosh Hashanah. Here is a tree’s New Year Checklist:
- Did I shelter the seedlings that live in my shade — so they will grow up to be a next generation like myself?
- Did I grow towards the sun as a tree should, reaching up higher and higher towards that which I can never grasp, but which nurtures me all the same the more I strive towards it?
- Did I make sure my roots remain firmly planted in the soil that nurtures them, and did I drop my leaves there in the fall to give back life to that which sustains me?
- Did I ensure that my fruits were sweet and nourished all that came to enjoy them? Did everyone walk away from me with a smile?
- Did I bend gently in the wind, accepting what G-d sends but never breaking or giving up hope?
- Did I grow in strength and wisdom with each new ring this year?
Come to think of it, not a bad checklist for us humans either!
Tu B’Shevat holds legal significance regarding the tithing of fruit in Israel, but it’s also celebrated with joy, as we look forward to the sweet bounty of the coming year. We observe Tu B’Shevat by eating the fruits for which Israel is famous—olives, dates, grapes, figs and pomegranates
Would you like to celebrate Tu Bishvat, with a festive Shabbat meal and eat special foods from the special fruits for which Israel is famous? Email Chany at firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your space for a special Tu Bishvat meal, Friday night at Lubavitch of Boulder, 4900 Sioux Drive.