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"Man is a tree of the field" (Deuteronomy 20:19). How many ways can this statement be interpreted? Perhaps there is one explanation for every species of trees...

Man and Tree

Man and Tree

"Man is a tree of the field." How many ways can this statement be interpreted?

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The Tree
A man was travelling through the desert, hungry, thirsty, and tired, when he came upon a tree bearing luscious fruit and affording plenty of shade, underneath which ran a spring of water...
Branches
Some folks think of people much as we think of cars on a highway: each with its own origin and destination, relating to one other only to negotiate lane changes and left-hand turns. But people are not cars.
A Tree's New Year Resolution
Did I grow towards the sun, reaching up higher and higher towards that which I can never grasp, but which nurtures me all the same the more I strive towards it?
The Old Man and the Fig Tree
There is a story in the Talmud of an old guy who was seen planting a fig tree. The people who observed him asked, "Do you really expect to live long enough to consume the fruits of your labor?"
A Stupid Little Ruler
What does it mean to be indispensable? For most of my life I’ve asked myself that question.
The Human Tree
A look at the various parts of the tree -- roots, trunk, branches, leaves, fruit and seeds -- and their corresponding elements within the human being
The Seven Species and Seven Attributes
Seven areas of our lives represented by the "Seven Kinds": our humanity (wheat), passion (barley), joy (grapes), intimacy (figs), action (pomegranates), struggle (olives) and tranquility (dates)
Life's Roots
A Meditation
We are trees, living two lives at once... Then there are our roots, deep under the ground, unmoving and serene…
Wheat & Dates
A Meditation
Some grow as wheat of the field, in a single season breaking through the ground and ripening.
Cuttings
Trees don't talk, but they have a great deal to say. And one of the most amazing things a tree says is about survival
Twins: a Saga
For what is man/ But a frame/ Of living wood/ With a bark of flesh/ Whose spent years/ Are carefully recorded/ In the rings of his soul/ To be counted and measured/ When his tree is felled--?
Packaging
The whole fruit business is a scam
Your Child, Your Tree
When you come to think of it, a child needs the very same things a tree does in order to grow: "earth," "water," "sun" and "air"
The Teaching Tree
As I say goodbye to my young students and clean up from our fruit party, I begin to think about how Tu B'Shevat relates to us as individuals...
Roots of Resilience
There is something very grounding about trees. They are solid, stationary and easy to hug. And, with roots knotted firmly in the soil and a dense net of branches that dance at its head, a tree can help anchor a lost and disoriented person . . .
The Best Is Yet to Come
It’s tougher now; I have far greater responsibilities and less time for fun. I’ve been shaped, molded, and somewhat scarred by my experiences, and it is much, much harder to change.
How to Plant a Tree
Like the seed that decomposes, we too need to let go and lose our old identity, generating freshness and newness in our life experiences...
What I Learned from a Tree
We humans like to plant trees. But as we tend and care for them, we ought to reflect on what we can learn from them as well.
My Family Tree
A Tu B'Shevat Lesson
The black and white pictures I have of them stare back at me asking me not to forget. Keep these pictures precious. This is my face, this is my family, and this is who you come from. We may have physically left the earth but your heritage is part of us. We are your roots...
The Teaching Tree
A Tu B'Shevat Lesson
As I say goodbye to my young students and clean up from our fruit party, I begin to think about how Tu B'Shevat relates to us as individuals...
Planting a Family Tree
Family life is a piece of art in of itself. It’s all about taking people, placing them on the same canvas, and making them interact in a way that creates a beautiful combination of personalities. It’s a display of the depth of life, giving a higher meaning and purpose to our existence . . .
My Little Tree
Only later did I notice that one tiny tree had been planted so close to the playground’s fence that its narrow branches had become entangled in the mesh. Would it ever grow to independent maturity like the other trees?
Nine Ways to Be Like a Tree
Since the Torah compares man to “a tree of the field,” we’ve collected nine lessons from the mystics that we can learn from trees.
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