Evonne Marzouk, the Orthodox co-founder of a Jewish environmental group, insists the Torah holds us responsible for the earth’s well-being
Sukkot, which begins later this week, celebrates the end of the harvest season. People decorate their sukkahs with branches and fruits as a way of giving thanks for the season’s bounty. Yet Jews generally shy away from nature worship, with its echoes of idolatry and paganism. It is even argued that Judaism’s human-centered worldview—the belief that humans alone are made in God’s image—makes us particularly ill-suited to respond to warnings about shrinking glaciers and dying species.
How, then, does a religious Jew who is deeply concerned about threats to the environment galvanize her community? Evonne Marzouk, the founder and executive director of Canfei Nesharim, a Jewish environmental organization, addressed that question for Vox Tablet. She spoke to host Sara Ivry about rabbinical and Torah-based justifications for making environmental sustainability a priority, her own journey to environmental advocacy, and the unique skills Orthodox Jews can bring to the challenges of sustainable living. [Running time: 19:38.]
It’s the time of year for apologies, but not everyone has forgiveness on their mind. An argument for not saying sorry until God does.
Daily rate: $2
Monthly rate: $18
Yearly rate: $180
WAIT, WHY DO I HAVE TO PAY TO COMMENT?
Tablet is committed to bringing you the best, smartest, most enlightening and entertaining reporting and writing on Jewish life, all free of charge. We take pride in our community of readers, and are thrilled that you choose to engage with us in a way that is both thoughtful and thought-provoking. But the Internet, for all of its wonders, poses challenges to civilized and constructive discussion, allowing vocal—and, often, anonymous—minorities to drag it down with invective (and worse). Starting today, then, we are asking people who'd like to post comments on the site to pay a nominal fee—less a paywall than a gesture of your own commitment to the cause of great conversation. All proceeds go to helping us bring you the ambitious journalism that brought you here in the first place.
I NEED TO BE HEARD! BUT I DONT WANT TO PAY.
Readers can still interact with us free of charge via Facebook, Twitter, and our other social media channels, or write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Each week, we’ll select the best letters and publish them in a new letters to the editor feature on the Scroll.
We hope this new largely symbolic measure will help us create a more pleasant and cultivated environment for all of our readers, and, as always, we thank you deeply for your support.