Bending to Nature

Rabbi Avi Strausberg

Seasons and Powerlessness

As a Jew living in Washington, DC, I neither witness the flowering of the almond trees in Israel in the heart of my winter, nor do I engage in the tithing of agricultural produce. Indeed, to a large extent, I try to mitigate the effects that seasons have on my life. On this Tu Bishvat, though, I wonder: what might this holiday, deeply rooted in agricultural cycles, teach me about living in concert with the natural seasons of the year? What might I learn from bending to nature rather than making it bend to me?