Celebrate the New Year of the Trees by Planting Olive Trees in Palestine!

Dear Friend,

Photo: Olive treeThis year Tu B'Shvat begins at sunset on January 30th. In the West, Tu B'Shvat, known as the "New Year of Trees", reminds us of the budding life beneath the blanket of winter. It is a Jewish holiday with a long history. In ancient times, farmers gave a portion of their fruits and nuts to people without land. In the 17th century, Jewish mystics hosted ritual meals, or seders, eating symbolic foods which represent various states of consciousness, and enjoying wine in stages from white to red.

In the 20th century, Tu B'Shvat was co-opted by the Jewish National Fund (JNF). It was promoted as an occasion to raise money for the state of Israel. Since its inception, the JNF has functioned with impunity as a nationalist land trust, buying and stealing land in Palestine/Israel exclusively for Jewish use. Through calling on Jews worldwide to donate and "plant a tree in Israel", the JNF took what was a spiritual celebration of our planet's natural cycles, and turned it into a propaganda tool for their colonial project.

Trees for Life: Planting Peace in PalestineIJVa video: Canadians are subsidizing the dispossession of Palestinians - help us put an end to this!

Let's resist and rewrite this story of dispossession. As a statement of our commitment to resist the use of trees to cover up ethnic cleansing and the destruction of communities and land, we invite you to plant a tree in Palestine this Tu B'Shvat through the Trees for Life program.

Your donation will provide saplings to Palestinian farmers, and support the Palestine Fair Trade Association (PFTA). The PFTA unites and supports farmers across Palestine. Priority goes to small farmers, young farmers, women interested in farming and farmers who have lost trees to the occupation.

Honour the sacred tree - it is the path of good and the path of life to anyone who cleaves to it.

Honour and REgenerate by planting a tree in Palestine this year!

Photo: SandraLaya

In solidarity,
SandraLaya Ruch
Celebrant of Life Cycle Events
IJV Spiritual Committee, Toronto