This week at Aish Center, we’re celebrating Jewcology week! In the lead-up to the festival of Tu B’Shevat, and our Downtown Jewcology Shabbat dinner (this week!), we want to take time to learn about, celebrate and actualize positive and sustainable environmental practices. We’re lucky to have some really awesome people guest blogging for us this week, to tell us about the wonderful and important work they do.
Without further ado, our first guest blogger…
Greetings from Philadelphia, PA! My name is Clare Hyre and I’m the Education Director at a CSA community supported agriculture) in Northwest Philadelphia. I’ve been working at this urban farm for the past two years and got my inspiration from apprenticing on farms around the country and from ADAMAH, a Jewish farming fellowship in Falls Village, CT.
Teaching and working the land are very spiritual acts for me. When I’m working hard and feeling the elements of nature around me, I can better center on the awesomeness of the divine and humanity. When I’m teaching, I can see the opening of hearts and minds within my students. I feel so privileged to be able be outside everyday and to have made my passion my vocation.
I believe it is especially important for people living in the city to interact with nature on a regular bases, especially in places where food is being grown. Whether or not you are (or can afford to be) a buy local or buy organic type, there something fundamentally valuable to see how a plant grows, to eat something fresh, to get your fingers dirty.
In a country that hardly acknowledges the tremendously hard work of farming (instead, it actually demeans it), it means so much to farmers to see folks put some effort into finding out where their food grows and partake in growing it. So show your farmer some respect and get involved!