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Tu b'Shvat is not just for kids

Tu b'Shvat is not just for kids

January 18th, 2018

by Nigel Savage Thursday, January 18, 2018 | 2 Shevat 5778 Dear All, Tu b'Shvat is “the new year for trees.” But, above and beyond the history – the tax year in temple times; the kabbalists in Safed; the JNF; the contemporary Jewish environmental movement[...]

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American Distinctiveness…

January 11th, 2018

by Nigel Savage Thursday, January 11, 2018 | 24 Tevet 5778 Dear All,I begin with condolences and congratulations.Condolences: We join with many others in mourning the tragic loss of Hannah Weiss, z"l, and her family. Hannah's memorial service took place this week. Although I had[...]

Reb Zalman z

Reb Zalman z"l and the Tree of Life

December 27th, 2017

by Nigel Savage Wednesday, July 9, 2014 | 11 Tammuz 5774 Dear All, As the week goes on, and despite events in Israel and so many other things, I remain profoundly aware of the death of Reb Zalman, may his memory be for a[...]

The Miracle of Chanukah: A Lesson on Longevity

The Miracle of Chanukah: A Lesson on Longevity

December 12th, 2017

Wondrous as it is, the miracle of Chanukah, in which an oil flask meant to last one day instead lasted eight, seems dwarfed in today’s world of everlasting products: plastic bottles, diapers, aluminum foil, electronics, to name a few. But[...]

Wrestling With Darkness | D'varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

Wrestling With Darkness | D'varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

December 7th, 2017

Jacob Weiss - Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center  Parshat Vayishlach This week’s Torah portion — Vayishlach — is jam packed with complex and significant plot lines that the reader can surely glean valuable lessons from. The parsha opens up with Jacob preparing himself and his[...]

Why go on a Jewish meditation retreat?

Why go on a Jewish meditation retreat?

December 6th, 2017

by Rabbi Jay Michaelson Wednesday, December 6, 2017 | 18 Kislev 5778 In large part, the answers are the same as to why one would go on a meditation retreat in general: greater awareness of how we thrive and how we suffer, recharging the mind[...]

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3 Good Things...

November 30th, 2017

by Nigel Savage Thursday, November 30, 2017 | 12 Kislev 5778 Dear All,Last week I shared Shawn Achor’s superb TED Talk.Part of his punchline is that if you journal three different good things that happen to you each day, over time that starts to cause you actually[...]

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A gratitude video that's laugh-out-loud funny - and helpful, too...

November 22nd, 2017

  by Nigel Savage Dear All, Last week, I sent to all of our staff, what I think is the best – and more significantly the most useful – TED Talk I’ve ever seen. It’s from a few years ago, by a fellow called Shawn[...]

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Fear and light

November 16th, 2017

by Nigel Savage Thursday, November 16, 2017 | 27 Cheshvan 5778 Dear All, It’s Rosh Chodesh Kislev this weekend. Light in the darkness. I say: Bring it on. That was my first thought. And my second was: What’s the line between cliché and language that is[...]

"Down To Earth" Judaism | D'varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

November 16th, 2017

Chayei Sarah Darya Watnick | Edlavitch DC JCC - Washington, DC  This week’s Torah portion is Chayei Sarah, literally “The Life of Sarah.” The title is a bit of a misnomer, as Sarah dies in the second verse. This portion instead focuses[...]

Parasha Vayeira - D'varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

Parasha Vayeira - D'varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

November 9th, 2017

By: Brittany Feldman - Hazon - Detroit, Michigan   This week's Torah Portion, Vayeira, discusses circumcision, birth, destruction, disobedience, and devotion. With so many themes in one portion, I’m choosing to focus on one that stood out to me the most, disobedience. In[...]

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The Ceremony of Innocence

November 2nd, 2017

by Nigel Savage November 2, 2017 | 13 Cheshvan 5778 Dear All, I rode into work the day before yesterday, as I do many days of the year, on a beautiful bike path on a beautiful day. Hazon worked quite hard, for several years,[...]

Ten New Sites Get the Green Light!

Ten New Sites Get the Green Light!

October 31st, 2017

A warm welcome and mazal tov to the Fall 2017 Seal of Sustainability Cohort! We are excited that these 10 new sites - from the east coast, west coast, and in between - are joining the Seal Network on a[...]

Unique Boulder Collaboration Leads to Big Food Rescue Wins

Unique Boulder Collaboration Leads to Big Food Rescue Wins

October 24th, 2017

The juxtaposition of the Jewish community's commitment to addressing hunger issues and the reality of literal tons of prepared foods being wasted after events was too much for Hazon's Boulder Director, Becky O'Brien, to handle. She observed that the Jewish[...]

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Sabbaticals, shmita, post-sabbatical...

October 19th, 2017

by Nigel Savage October 19, 2017 | 29 Tishrei 5778 Dear All, This week is the start of the rest of our lives the first week after the end of the Jewish holidays, and my first week back at work after my sabbatical.[...]

Changing the Way Animals are Raised for Food

Changing the Way Animals are Raised for Food

October 18th, 2017

Hazon joins Bon Appetit, UC Berkeley, Airbnb and other organizations as a leader in animal welfare in food service supply chains. Hazon was invited to join Farm Forward's Leadership Circle for the eggs we serve to the thousands of guests who[...]

Siach for the Seas

Siach for the Seas

October 4th, 2017

By David Krantz Imagine a Siach that isn’t just for Jews, but isn’t secular — a Siach that’s wholly religious and spiritual, but involving many religions —  and you’d have a conference run by the National Religious Coalition on Creation Care.[...]

Reflection on Law Society Human Rights Conference

Reflection on Law Society Human Rights Conference

October 4th, 2017

By Simone Abel On 10 December 2012, I was privileged to attend the annual Law Society Human Rights Conference in London on a Siach Stipend.  The focus of the conference was the impact of human rights principles on discrimination law, particularly[...]

Tu B’Shmita: Jewish Energy Guide Released

Tu B’Shmita: Jewish Energy Guide Released

October 4th, 2017

By David Krantz NEW YORK (Jan. 16, 2014) — The next Shmita year is scheduled to begin in September, so we need to get ready! The Jewish Energy Guide is designed to help the Jewish community become more environmentally sustainable and[...]

Having a gay old time from Freedman to Eshbal… a cave man’s song not a cave man’s attitude!

Having a gay old time from Freedman to Eshbal… a cave man’s song not a cave man’s attitude!

October 4th, 2017

A group of activists from North America, Israel and Europe who met at the first Siach conference at Isabella Freedman Retreat Centre, have been collaborating on a couple of projects since we left the lentils, goats and lake behind in[...]

René Cassin Fellows Program

René Cassin Fellows Program

October 4th, 2017

When Simone Abel of Rene Cassin and Rabbi Sid Schwartz of CLAL first ran into each other at Limmud, they had the sense that they might enjoy working together. But it wasn’t until the Siach Conference that they found the[...]

Siach Collaboration Spreads as Far as India

Siach Collaboration Spreads as Far as India

October 4th, 2017

By Yonatan Glaser, Director, B’Tzedek, (and Manager of the joint initiative in India), and Nir Lahav, Director, Project T.E.N. and the Director of Young Activism Unit, The Jewish Agency For Israel It is with great excitement that the Jewish Agency’s Project[...]

Hurricanes, earthquakes, floods... and chicken coops

Hurricanes, earthquakes, floods... and chicken coops

October 3rd, 2017

by Judith Belasco October 3rd, 2017 | 13 Tishrei 5778 Dear All, My family built our sukkah this past Sunday. I felt an uneasy juxtaposition between the joy of this holiday – freely choosing to create and decorate a temporary home in which we will share[...]

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Hurricanes, earthquakes, floods... and chicken coops

October 2nd, 2017

by Judith Belasco October 3rd, 2017 | 13 Tishrei 5778 Dear All, My family built our sukkah this past Sunday. I felt an uneasy juxtaposition between the joy of this holiday – freely choosing to create and decorate a temporary home in which we[...]

Parasha Ha'Azinu - D'Varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

Parasha Ha'Azinu - D'Varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

September 25th, 2017

By Amanda Gluckich - Milk and Honey Farm - Boulder, CO In this week’s Torah portion, Parshat Ha’Azinu, we learn that the people of Israel, who have been wandering the desert for forty years after leaving Egypt, are about to enter[...]

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2017 JOFEE Network Gathering Remarks

September 18th, 2017

From Steven Green, Director of Grants Management and Program Officer, Jim Joseph Foundation We are here! We tend to wish one another a Shana Tovah while we acknowledge this has been a Shana Kashe. It’s been a tough year. That’s probably the understatement[...]

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Parasha Netzavim: Choosing to Dig In

September 14th, 2017

By: Margot Sands - Ekar Farm - Boulder, Co Parasha Netzavim This week’s Torah portion, Netzavim, offers us the warning of risks and rewards that could result from engaging in Judaism. See for yourself in a snapshot of this week’s Torah portion: Moses delivers[...]

Less Fear, More Resolve

Less Fear, More Resolve

September 8th, 2017

by Nigel Savage Originally posted in the Forward on August 30, 2017. "Who shall live and who shall die,” a line in the prayer Unetanneh Tokef, is the emotional highpoint of the Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur liturgy. The power of it[...]

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When 6,500 people come together

September 7th, 2017

by Judith Belasco September 7th, 2017 | 16 Elul 5777 Dear All, Dreams (and dreamers) are being seemingly pushed aside. Storms are raging wilder and fiercer as the climate changes. Difference is being aligned with fear. We must find ways to open our doors[...]

Spotlight on a Siach Partnership: Rosh Hashanah LaBehema

Spotlight on a Siach Partnership: Rosh Hashanah LaBehema

September 6th, 2017

Aharon Varady (The Open Siddur Project, USA) has joined forces with Yossi Wolfson (Ginger, Israel) and Shmuly Yanklowitz (Uri L’Tzedek, USA)  to revive the Mishnaic idea of Rosh Hashana LaBehama, Rosh Hashana for animals. So what is “the New Year for[...]

Shabbat at Burning Man

Shabbat at Burning Man

September 1st, 2017

By: Leo Cockrell - Camp Tawonga - San Francisco, CA I arrived on playa for my first Burning Man at midnight on Sunday after eight hours of driving. I got out of my car and I was immediately aware that I[...]

In the News: Styrofoam Bans, Paw Paw Trees, and a Home for the Chickens

In the News: Styrofoam Bans, Paw Paw Trees, and a Home for the Chickens

August 14th, 2017

Across the country, over forty Jewish organizations are committing to making a better world through the Hazon Seal of Sustainability. Local papers nationwide have highlighted Seal organization's innovative sustainability initiatives. Read on for stories about planting of paw paw trees, building[...]

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Building a world I want to live in

August 10th, 2017

by Judith Belasco August 10, 2017 | 18 Av 5777 Dear All, We are more wired together – yet more disconnected from each other – than ever. It is hard to understand. A recent Atlantic article explored the sharp generational changes that are already surfacing. The first[...]

Gender Identity, Oaths, and Inheritance in Matot-Masei | D'varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

Gender Identity, Oaths, and Inheritance in Matot-Masei | D'varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

July 27th, 2017

Darya Watnick - Edlavitch DC Jewish Community Center - Washington, DC Parshat Matot-Masei This week in the Torah we see a double portion: Matot-Masei. Combining Matot and Masei, the two chapters at the end of Numbers/Bamidbar, allows for the need to start the[...]

Parasha Pinchas / D'Varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

Parasha Pinchas / D'Varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

July 23rd, 2017

By: Jaclyn Kellner - Coastal Roots Farm - Encinitas, CA Parasha Pinchas “Take a census of all the congregation of the children of Israel from twenty years old and upwards, following their fathers’ houses…” From here, this week's parsha, Parshat Pinchas, continues[...]

When a Donkey Speaks Truth to Power | D'varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

When a Donkey Speaks Truth to Power | D'varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

July 14th, 2017

Hannah Slipakoff, Jewish Farm School - Philadelphia, PA Parashat Balak In this week’s Parasha, Balak (Numbers 22:2- 25:9), we read a tale about the ways in which kindness and gratitude contribute to justice and G-dliness, and an allegory relating systemic patterns of oppression[...]

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Make an investment in happiness

July 13th, 2017

by Judith Belasco   July 13th, 2017 | 19 Tamuz 5777 Dear All, On Tuesday, we began what is known on the Jewish calendar as "the Three Weeks." This is a time of decreasing happiness which culminates in Tisha B'av, a commemoration of the destruction[...]

Reflection on Returning to Detroit

Reflection on Returning to Detroit

July 10th, 2017

by Zoe McCoon, Hazon Detroit Summer 2017 Rabbinic Fellow After finishing my first year of rabbinical school, I had mixed feelings about leaving Jerusalem – a place I found filled with spiritual energy and fervor… and yet, I was counting down[...]

When It Rains It Pours | D'varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

When It Rains It Pours | D'varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

July 6th, 2017

Ryan Kaplan, Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta Parshat Chukat “Moses made a copper serpent and mounted it on a standard; and when anyone was bitten by a serpent, they would look at the copper serpent and recover.” Numbers 21:9 As I write this[...]

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Sign | Seal | Deliver

June 29th, 2017

from Judith Belasco June 29th, 2017 | 5th of Tamuz, 5777 Dear all, Last year, from the bimah at Greenburgh Hebrew Center, a shul outside NYC, there was a reminder to attend the annual meeting and vote to approve the budget. I overheard[...]