Perfect Timing

fruit

Today is the 13th of the Hebrew month of Sh’vat. This month is most known for the celebration of Tu B’Sh’vat – the birthday of the trees – which we celebrate by eating fruits, nuts and drinking wine, preferably from the Land of Israel. That’s a wildly simplified explanation of the holiday, but it’s good enough for now.

My focus is elsewhere. In Judaism, each Hebrew month is associated with particular characteristics – the letter of the month, the tribe of the month, the sense of the month, the body part of the month, etc.

It’s part of the incredibly complex system of Jewish learning known as kabbalah. This learning points out to us that there are certain spiritual potentials that are most potent during that month – things we can achieve best in the unique energy of that month.

The sense of the month of Sh’vat is taste.  “Taste and see that God is good.” (Ps. 34:9)  According to Reb Elimelech of Lizhensk, this verse means that when you taste and see your food with greater awareness. you understand that all goodness is actually God.

Of what am I tasting and seeing more clearly? Of where my food comes from, of what impact it has on my well-being, of who was harmed and who was helped in providing that food to me.

More than that, the month of Sh’vat is ideally suited to rectification of our eating habits, elevating the way we eat with additional holiness, additional mindfulness.

I stopped eating most animal-based foods just a week before the month of Sh’vat began. It wasn’t until after the fact that I realized how perfect that timing was.

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One response to this post.

  1. […] a major life change is never easy. Holyland Vegan has just started the journey the standard American diet to a plant-strong lifestyle. She explains […]

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