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The Hull Reform Synagogue - Ne've Shalom Reform Judaism

 

 

 

ECO-SYNAGOGUE

 

Hull Reform Synagogue has officially joined the fight against climate change! We are signed up to the Eco-Synagogue project and cannot wait to get started. When the Synagogue re-opens, we are hoping to hold activities and education sessions which we hope you will be involved in.

 

As part of the Eco-Synagogue project, we want to start including a regular article or topic of interest in the Shofar Shalom. If you see anything that you would like to be included, or you wish to be a part of our Environmental Impact Team please contact Laura or the Shul Council.

 

What does Judaism teach about the environment?

 

Jews believe that God created the world (Genesis) and gave human beings a special responsibility within creation to cultivate it, guard it and use it wisely. This is known as stewardship.

 

"God gives man control of the environment." Some people interpret this to mean human beings have been given total power over everything on Earth to do as they want, but most Jews believe that humans should act responsibly, ensuring the environment is not treated badly. Everyone has to work within creation and look after it:

 

"The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it." The Tenakh makes it clear that, as the whole Earth belongs to God, humans have to respect it and hand it back to God unspoiled. The earth is the Lord's, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it.

 

These passages can be used to support different sides of the argument about how Jews should care for the environment. However, the main message is that God is the one who provides for humans and humans show they are thankful by taking care of what God has given them."

 

Tikkun Olam

 

Tikkun Olam means 'repairing the world' and expresses the Jewish desire to encourage harmony in the world. This refers to social harmony, people being able to live in peace with each other, enjoying health, justice and prosperity. It also refers to a duty to take care of the environment.

 

One of the ways Jews try to heal the world is the sabbatical year. According to the Bible, every seven years, the land should be allowed to lie fallow, so that the natural ingredients in the soil can be replenished and better harvests can be expected in the future. The Jewish Declaration on Nature at Assisi in 1986 makes the following important points:

 

God made order out of chaos when he created the world.
Man accepted responsibility before God for all of creation, at the beginning of time.
The righteous Jew lives in the world and respects the rights of other people and creation itself.
Humans were given dominion over nature, but God commanded them to behave towards the rest of creation with justice and compassion.

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All contributions are accepted on the understanding that the authors are responsible for the opinions expressed which do not necessarily reflect the views of Ne've Shalom - the Hull Reform Synagogue.

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Ne've Shalom
Great Gutter Lane
Willerby
Hull
HU10 6DP