Brickner Seminar at Pearlstone, first morning

For me, Tikkun Olam is inextricably intertwined with sustaining the world entire.  It always has been, though I didn’t know those words for it.  I was always out in nature and also trying to see the biggest picture.  When I was at Camp Swig in California in the summer of 1974, in my first intensive Hebrew summer camp session, I remember arguing with fellow campers that the maintenance staff shouldn’t come and exterminate a wasp nest near one of the cabins; those wasps had a right to live just as much as we did.  We had a camper terribly allergic to stings — bee? wasp? hornet?  Did we kids know the difference, really? — and so I was confronted with an argument for the other side that I couldn’t answer either: What right had we to ask a fellow camper to assume a danger we didn’t have to assume?  Though again, I didn’t have it thought out quite like that at the time, and that’s not at all what my interlocutors meant; they simply privileged human life above wasp life.  Which isn’t an unreasonable position for a human to take, but it wasn’t mine, in theory at least.

So here I am at a Tikkun Olam seminar, reveling in the sustainable farming going on right here at the retreat center.

Hoop house in the morning