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		                                    Thinking Torah Blog		                                </span>

06/09/2022 05:00:00 PM

Jun9

Rabbi Josh Whinston

Lately, I have been thinking a lot about how we perceive time and divide time in our lives. What are the touchstones that help us define periods in our life? How do we relate to critical moments that have happened or are going to happen and imagine how they cause us to change? In what ways does shared time establish connection and identity between groups of people?

For our ancestors in the desert, there are several guideposts of time. Standing at Sinai, the punishment of 40 years of wandering, and the steppes of Moab are all important moments that our ancestors experienced and could be used as points of emanation of a new time. But, maybe the most common and regular designation of time comes when the cloud, representing God, settles over the Tabernacle and the Israelites know to stop moving through the desert, or when it lifts, and the Israelites know to move.

We might do well to divide our time by the clouds as well. By that, I mean, as we think about our planet and the work we need to do to ensure the future of life on our planetary home, we should consider the seasons more. I know the urge for fresh fruit flown in from half a world away or some vegetable that is out of season during the winter, and I certainly have succumbed to that desire, as I am sure many of us have. We know, however, that we need to eat more locally and that our choices have consequences for our environment. It is a small action, but collectively our choices add up.

I am looking forward to eating the strawberries growing in my backyard right now. I am confident they will taste better than anything I could get in the grocery store from Mexico or California in December. It’s worth the wait.

Mon, August 15 2022 18 Av 5782