Like Tree, Like Child: Tu B’Shevat & Nurturing

A CHILD IS LIKE A SAPLING that will grow best under the right conditions. It’s no wonder, then, that the Hebrew word for seed, zerah, also means offspring. Just as tree farmers spend years cultivating orchards, so too do parents and families exert countless hours raising their children.
What Tu B’Shevat Can Teach Us about NurturingIn ancient times, the Jewish holiday of Tu B’Shevat — New Year for the trees — served primarily as a marker within the agriculture cycle. Over the centuries, however, the holiday has taken on new meanings and metaphors.
Medieval kabbalists, for example, perceived Tu B’Shevat as a celebration of commonalities among trees and mankind. As they saw it, trees and people alike benefitted from deep roots, a strong base, and consistent nurturing.