A Bisl Torah

Winter Blues

In just a few days, we will celebrate Tu B’Shevat, the holiday that is considered the “New Year” for the trees. The 15th of Shevat was meant to separate the year in terms of agricultural cycles.

Even in California, the air is crisp. It is hard to imagine celebrating the abundance of nature in a time in which the ground is frigid and little green is seen across the country. Wouldn’t it seem better to commemorate this holiday in spring, when the scenery is lush?

Rashi explains that as most of the seasonal rain has come, this is the exact time when sap rises in the trees and begins the process of flowers blooming. It is a beautiful idea. That even when it looks as if nature is dead, the cycle of life continues and is celebrated.

So too is the nature of our own lives. When we feel as if we can’t possibly bloom, that our desire to grow and reach further is dormant and sleepy, Tu B’Shevat serves to remind us that this is the exact time in which life is renewed.

May we soon see the flowers on the trees; may we soon see our passions and hopes renewed.

Shabbat Shalom 

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