[Rabbi Arthur Waskow and Rabbinical Student Faryn Borella are working together on the year-long Shalom Center program of #Holy Days4Climate. Faryn is the Ira Silverman Memorial Intern for The Shalom Center. For the next several weeks, as we approach the darkest days of the ear,  we will focus on #Hanukkah8Days4Climate  -- the Festival of Lights.]

We hope to inspire Jewish activism on the climate crisis in tune with the festival cycle. The next Festival is #Hanukkah8Days4Climate, which begins with the first candle Sunday evening December 22 and runs through the evening of Monday Dec 30. (The eighth candle is Sunday evening.) 

We light those eight candles to honor the ancient legend that enough Oil for one day’s sacred use to heal the desecrated Temple lasted for eight days. “A Miracle!” says the story in the Talmud:  “God conserved energy to meet the sacred needs of God’s people to heal God’s Temple.”

Learning from this legend, how do we meet our sacred need to heal our desecrated Temple Earth?  By conserving sacred energy in our own way. By lighting and warming our own lives with wind and sunlight.

 How do we draw on the symbols and practices of Hanukkah to do that?

 We suggest drawing on the Eight Days of Hanukkah like this:








Sun Dec. 22- Mon Dec. 23

Waning crescent

Resource Rejuvenation


Gather in community for candle-lighting, pot- luck, & Torah Study applying Hanukkah to Energy Conservation, and Climate Justice.


Mon Dec. 23- Tue Dec. 24

Waning crescent

Resource Renewal

Action: Personal

Switch your utility provider from coal or oil to renewables.


Tue Dec. 24- Wed. Dec 25

Waning crescent

Resource Conservation

Action: Communal

Go 100% LED light bulbs at home & Jewish & other religious or communal gathering-spaces.



Wed. Dec. 25- Thu Dec. 26


Astronomers’ “New (No) Moon”

Resource Redistribution

Action: Societal

Shift your banking from Carbon-supporting Earth-burning national banks to community banks or credit unions to boost local neighborhoods.


Thu Dec. 26- Fri Dec. 27

Astronomers’ “New (No) Moon”

Resource Allocation

Action: Political

Write to/call your Congress people, asking for their support for the Green New Deal and the Green New Deal for Public Housing Act.


Fri Dec. 27-Sat Dec. 28

Astronomers’ “New (No) Moon”

Resource Limitation

Action: Spiritual

Power down for Shabbat, just as our forebears did, by limiting use of gasoline, electronics, and electricity for 25 hours.


Sat Dec. 28- Sun Dec. 29

New Moon in Jewish Tradition: Rosh Chodesh Tevet

Resource Sharing

Action: Public

Hold a candle-lighting and havdalah in public space, calling for separation between these times of climate apathy and the coming times of transformative climate healing



Sun Dec. 29- Mon Dec. 30

Waxing Crescent

Resource Transformation

Action: Enduring

Gather in community to devise a Green Menorah Covenant, binding the community together in continued climate justice action in the coming year.


[This graphic, created by and for The Shalom Center, picks up on the Torah’s description of the Temple Menorah as essentially a Tree with branches, buds, and blossoms. See Exodus 25: 32-39]

In further mailings during the next few weeks, we will put more meat on the bare bones of these suggestions, day by day.

As we move toward the season of light in the midst of dark, we send you blessings of Light as Clarity and Dark as Mystery –  Arthur & Faryn

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