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To be enthralled


Translation by Yehoshua Siskin

Happy Tu Bishvat. Rabbi Zevik Harel wrote the following about this special day:

"If we could only raise our heads a little bit from where they hover over our cell phone screens, we would see what a wonderful world it is in which we live. God could have created a world where we feed ourselves from capsules that contain all the vitamins we need. We would swallow them like medicine, once or twice a day, and that would be it.

But, as we say in grace after meals, God chose to create the world with 'grace, lovingkindness, and mercy,' with flavor, color, and fragrance. He created the banana with its unique texture, the mango with its enticing tropical taste, the date with its concentrated sweetness, and the guava with its special scent that is unmistakable as long as you don't hold your nose. Moreover, every fruit and vegetable contains a long list of nutritionally rich ingredients.

We should always have this awareness, but once a year, today on Tu Bishvat, a wonderful opportunity comes our way to be enthralled. To gaze at and appreciate the incredible ingenuity found in creation, to spread its fruits on the table, and between bites -- one sweet and the next tart -- to express thanks for the abundance that sustains us. Happy Tu Bishvat."


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