Tag Archives | Chanukah


Honoring the Darkness – D’varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog

by Shani Mink – Pushing the Envelope Farm, Geneva IL & Pearlstone Retreat Center, Reisterstown MD Parshat Vayeishev Editor’s Note: Welcome to D’varim HaMakom: The JOFEE Fellows Blog! Most weeks throughout the year, you’ll be hearing from the JOFEE Fellows: reflections on their experiences, successful programs they’ve planned and implemented, gleanings from the field, and connections to the weekly Torah portion and what they’ve learned from their experiences with place in their host communities for the year. Views expressed are the author’s and do not necessarily represent Hazon. Be sure to check back weekly!  P.S. Interested in being or hosting a JOFEE Fellow? Applications for prospective fellows will continue to be reviewed as positions are available.   In this week’s Torah portion, Vayeishev, we find Jacob and his family settled in the land of Canaan.  After Rachel’s death, her firstborn son, Yoseph quickly becomes his father’s favorite and is given his famous Technicolor Dream-Coat.  The special treatment he receives from Jacob incites Yoseph’s brothers’ jealously which is only exacerbated by the retelling of dreams in which he is portrayed as ruling over them. While tending their father’s flocks, the sons of Jacob plot to kill their brother Yoseph, but the eldest, Reuven, implores them […]

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Chanukah Miracles and Climate Change

By Daniel Bloom, Hazon Program Associate Traditionally on Chanukah we celebrate the curious episode of a jug of oil, enough for one day, miraculously burning for eight days. The rabbis debated the exact nature of the miracle. Amongst the many possibilities, one opinion suggests that the oil was divided into eighths, each of which burned for an entire day. Another opinion claims that after filling the menorah on each of the first seven nights, the jug remained full. It is apt that we will be thinking about burning oil when the world’s leaders meet in the coming days for the UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen. The Conference represents the best opportunity so far for the community of nations to tackle the issue of climate change on a global scale and discuss concrete plans and targets for the reduction of greenhouse emissions. Nonetheless, there is reason to be skeptical. First, we may assume that the leaders of the world’s nations lack the political will to commit to serious change, and second, that even if leaders were to make a commitment, a top-down nation-state driven campaign would have little impact in changing global emission patterns. These two claims are undoubtedly interrelated. […]

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