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Tu B'Shvat, the fifteenth day of the Hebrew month of Shevat, is our New Year for Trees. The skies may still be gloomy, the trees may still look barren, but Tu B'Shvat is our wake-up call, a reminder that change – and spring – are inevitably coming. The French medieval commentator, Rashi, explains that Tu B'Shvat is when the sap of new life begins to rise in the trees, which leads to the production of new fruit. In other words, even though we can't see it yet, Tu B'Shvat is when the magic starts.


The beautiful blossoms and delicious fruits, which we will enjoy when spring reaches its culmination, are just beginning to grow. They are still invisible to our eyes, but Tu B'Shvat invites us into greater awareness of what is happening just under the surface, all around us. And since our ancient sages playfully reread a verse in the Torah (Deuteronomy 20:19) to mean that “a human being is a tree,” our tradition insists that what applies to trees is also true for us humans.

To continue reading this article about Tu B'Shvat on the Times of Israel website, please click here.

The Kabbalists of 16th century Tzfat (Safed) in the Galilee created a Tu B'Shvat Seder. This ritual mirrors the Passover Seder, and serves to help us experience the potential for renewal and growth that this season brings.

To be sent a Tu B'Shvat Seder Guide and source sheet with many delicious mystical teachings, please click here and write "Tu B'Shvat" as your message (spelt however you choose!).

For more teachings and practices about growth and transformation through connection to our calendar and the seasons, please see the Kabbalah through the Calendar course.

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