In Commemoration of Earth Day: A Conversation with Rabbi Ellen Bernstein

This year marks the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. In commemoration of the event, Charles Forbes – host of the weekly podcast series Torah for the Earth – sat down to have a discussion with Rabbi Ellen Bernstein, founder of Shomrei Adamah: the first national Jewish environmental organization. She has since been writing and teaching on the intersection of Judaism and ecology, as well as the ecological potential of Jewish ritual. She has published three books – The Splendor of Creation, Ecology and the Jewish Spirit, and Let the Earth Teach You Torah ­– and two two haggadot for Passover (The Promise of the Land) and Tu B’Shvat (A New Year for the Trees).

For more information of Rabbi Ellen Bernstein’s work, please visit:

Listen to this Podcast

Themes discussed in the podcast:

  • Shomrei Adamah – “Keepers of the Earth”

  • Creation myths in Genesis

  • The space and atmosphere created by ritual

  • The academic field of Religion and Ecology

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The Deep Water Initiative is inspired by the ecological importance of water as an all-pervasive element that sustains life on this planet.  The metaphysical importance of water as both a cleanser and regenerator has been upheld by many cultures throughout the world, and is celebrated within the creation myths of different religious and spiritual traditions.  The Deep Water Initiative has been particularly influenced by the significance of water as demonstrated within the Five Books of Moses.


*The Deep Water Initiative is classified as a private operating foundation that qualifies for tax exempt status under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

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