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Rimonin is a collectively sponsored poet-in-residence project for Puerto Rican Jewish poet Aurora Levins Morales to create new liturgy that is fully inclusive of Indigenous Jews and Jews of Color, rooted in global, diasporic Jewish cultures, is in accountable relationship with local indigenous people wherever we're located, and recognizes and responds to the danger and opportunity of our ecological crisis.
Rimonim is fully collaborative. Our partners contribute financially, through support labor, and by engaging in deep conversations about crafting prayers and rituals that meet the political and spiritual needs of Jewish people and our friends who share a passion or justice.
joyous and radical and richly blends the depth of meaning we find in words repeated for thousands of years with the spiritual, moral and political needs of this moment, in which we either dismantle the systemic injustices that drive the destruction of our ecosystem or we watch our world crumble away.
Although together we’ll be creating abundant resources for Jewish holidays, at the heart of the project are Shabbat and other home practices and daily rituals we can take with us wherever we go, tools to anchor us into our most deeply held values and connections as we work to build the just world we dream of, making a web of new relationships and a book of shared liturgy we can carry in our hearts and in our pockets.
Rehearsing for Sukkot at First Nations Garden in Chicago.
Aurora Levins Morales is a Puerto Rican Ashkenazi poet, essayist, historian and activist.
Last week I co-led Justice Shall Dwell in the Garden, an Indigenous People's Day Sukkot celebration, created with Tzedek Chicago andhosted by Chi-Nations Youth Council at the First Nations Garden in Chicago. Here's an excerpt from Earth Sh'ma, which I wrote for the event.
Listen: There is no earth but this earth and we are its children. The earth is our home, and there is only one. The ground beneath our feet was millions of years in the making. Each leaf, each blade, each wing, each petal, each hair on the flank of a red fox, each scale on the sturgeon, each mallard feather, each pine needle and fragment of sassafras bark took millions of years to become, and we ourselves are millions of years in the making.
The earth offers itself and all its gifts freely, offers rain and sunlight, and the shimmer of moon on its lakes, offers corn and squash, apples and honey, salmon and lamb, and clear, cold water and all it asks in return is that we love it, respect its ways, cherish it.
So, we shall love the earth and all that lives with all our hearts, with all our souls, with all our intelligence, with all our might.