Currently Browsing: Jewish Veganism 13 articles

Rabbi Robyn Ashworth-Steen

A return to Eden: Jewish clergy from across the world and the denominational spectrum reflect on their veganism

Photo: Rabbi Robyn Ashworth-Steen Article by: Kohenet Yael Tischler Many people speak of transformative experiences in spiritual settings, but when Rabbi Robyn Ashworth-Steen was at last December’s Hamakom silent retreat, she recounted the following revelation: We had just had a session on mindful eating from Rabbi Sheila Weinberg. I sat down at lunch and was […]

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The whole world has a song… The universe according to Perek Shira

By: Kohenet Yael Tischler   Have you ever been plagued by the question, “What does the fox say?” Perek Shira, an ancient Jewish text, has the answer. In fact, it has the answer about many different creatures, as well as plants and other wonders of nature. Perek Shira imagines that every element of our ecosystem […]

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El pan de siete cielos – the bread of the seven heavens: Reclaiming a Salonikan Shavuot tradition the vegan way!

There’s a famous Talmudic saying: אֵין קֶמַח, אֵין תּוֹרָה Ein kemach, ein torah If there’s no flour, there’s no Torah. – Pirkei Avot 3:17 In other words, how can we even begin feeding our minds, if we haven’t yet fed our bodies? I’ve known this saying for a while, but what I didn’t learn until […]

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Once, there were unicorns…

Once, there were unicorns. Long ago, when we were desert wanderers, G-d/dess instructed us to make a portable sanctuary, so that S/he could dwell amongst us: וְעָ֥שׂוּ לִ֖י מִקְדָּ֑שׁ וְשָׁכַנְתִּ֖י בְּתוֹכָֽם׃ And let them make Me a sanctuary that I may dwell among them. – Exodus 25:8 The instructions S/he gave were detailed – an […]

camels

Ancestral animal lovers: Biblical characters who treated animals with kindness

Jewish tradition imagines G-d/dess as one who cares for all creatures. According to the Babylonian Talmud, “in the third three hours (of the day), G-d sits and nourishes the entire world, from the giant-horned wild oxen to the eggs of lice” (Avodah Zara 3b). But kindness to animals isn’t only something ascribed to the Divine, […]

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Judaism & veganism: The intersection of two paths

I remember a conversation I had with a fellow community member a few months ago. I told her about my job at the Jewish Vegetarian Society and immediately a perplexed expression danced across her face. “Judaism and vegetarianism?!” she said. “How could those things possibly go together?!” She’s not alone with this question – many […]

lentils

Jacob’s lentil stew: The secret recipe delicious enough to buy a birthright

There’s nothing like a hearty lentil stew. Healthy, comforting and warming, it’s one of the dishes I’ve been craving most during my time in lockdown. At the end of a tough day, a big bowl of lentils is like a bunch of legumes giving you a cuddle.  Our ancestors’ relationship with lentils goes way, way […]

Photo credit: Photo by Anna Kaminova on Unsplash

If animals could speak, what would they say? The story of Balaam and his amazing talking donkey

Animal rights activists often pose the question: “If animals could speak, what would they say?” The Torah actually offers us an answer to this question, with an incredible talking she-donkey in the starring role. Here’s the context: The Israelites are in the midst of their forty-year-long wanderings through the desert, during which they pass through […]

Shema in the Blue Sefer Torah (written by a Sefardi aider in an Ashkenazi style); credit: Soferet Avielah Barclay

Tefillin: A bind for the Jewish vegan

Photo: Shema in the Blue Sefer Torah (written by a Sefardi aider in an Ashkenazi style); credit: Soferet Avielah Barclay * וְהָי֞וּ הַדְּבָרִ֣ים הָאֵ֗לֶּה אֲשֶׁ֨ר אָנֹכִ֧י מְצַוְּךָ֛ הַיּ֖וֹם עַל־לְבָבֶֽךָ׃ וְשִׁנַּנְתָּ֣ם לְבָנֶ֔יךָ וְדִבַּרְתָּ֖ בָּ֑ם בְּשִׁבְתְּךָ֤ בְּבֵיתֶ֙ךָ֙ וּבְלֶכְתְּךָ֣ בַדֶּ֔רֶךְ וּֽבְשָׁכְבְּךָ֖ וּבְקוּמֶֽךָ׃ וּקְשַׁרְתָּ֥ם לְא֖וֹת עַל־יָדֶ֑ךָ וְהָי֥וּ לְטֹטָפֹ֖ת בֵּ֥ין עֵינֶֽיךָ׃ וּכְתַבְתָּ֛ם עַל־מְזוּזֹ֥ת בֵּיתֶ֖ךָ וּבִשְׁעָרֶֽיךָ׃ Take to heart these instructions […]

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The 10 plagues of right now

At this year’s Passover Seder, I was struck like never before by the realness and immediacy of the 10 plagues, writes Kohenet Yael Tischler. The Seder, the festive meal that helps us tell the story of Passover – that is, the Exodus from Egypt – is all about things feeling real. It says in the […]

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