Share on Google Plus Share on Twitter Share on Facebook Share on LinkedIn Share on PInterest Share on Fark! Share on Reddit Share on StumbleUpon Tell A Friend 1 (1 Shares)  
Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites View Stats   3 comments

OpEdNews Op Eds

The "AVATAR" film & the Trees' ReBirthDay: Celebrating Forest and the Lungs of Earth

      (Page 1 of 2 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; ; , Add Tags Add to My Group(s)

View Ratings | Rate It Headlined to H3 1/4/10

- Advertisement -

The "AVATAR" film & the Trees' ReBirthDay:

Celebrating Forest and the Lungs of Earth --

Interfaith gatherings for Tu B'Shvat, Jan. 29-30

[Bottom line for this letter: I urge that in many communities across our continent, multireligious groups together see the new film AVATAR this month; learn with me by teleconference seminar on January 14 the connections between this film and the meaning of the festival of Tu B'Shvat that celebrates the ReBirthDay of the Tree of Life; and then gather January 29 to eat together the sacred meal of Tu B'Shvat. Why? See the unfolding below. -- AW]

Several milestones in my life came this past week as I continue climbing into and beyond my post-car-crash ordeal of the last four months. One came Sunday afternoon, when Phyllis and I saw our first movie-movie (in a movie house, not DVD) since August. We drove there in a used Prius we have just bought to replace the car that was totaled in August.

The film was AVATAR. It is an obvious metaphor for the European-USA destruction of Native America and Africa; for the corporate destruction of the Amazon forest and its tribal human eco-partners; for the US destruction of much of Iraq and parts of Afghanistan.

For the indigenous peoples of the film's planet Pandora, the most sacred places are ancient living trees that embody the life force of the planet. So for me, the film spoke powerfully in the tongue of Tu B'Shvat, the festival of the Trees' ReBirthDay.

AVATAR is extraordinary. -- Not only the technology of the filming/ viewing, 3D and FX, but most of all for its spiritually rooted progressive politics.

See it!

- Advertisement -

See it in the spirit of its watchword: "I see you." Expressing what in Hebrew is "yodea," interactive knowing that is emotional, intellectual, physical/ sexual, and spiritual all at one - what "grok" is in the English borrowing from High Martian, channeled by Robert Heinlein.

In the film, the indigenous people - the Na'vi - [in Hebrew, this would mean "prophet"] of Pandora stand in the way of an Earthian techno-conquistador corporation that is hungry to gobble up a rare mineral.

The Na'vi worship/ celebrate a biological unity of the planet and all its life-forms -- Eywa -- especially focused on great trees that are the most sacred centers of their lives. These great trees embody Eywa, the Great Mother - but S/He is more than even these trees, S/He is all life. Spirit incarnate.

We are just now approaching the ecological-mystical festival of Tu B'Shvat. It intertwines celebration of the midwinter rebirth of trees and the rebirth of the Great Tree of Life Itself, God, Whose roots are in heaven and whose fruit is our world.
Tu B'Shvat comes on the 15th day (the full moon) of the midwinter Jewish lunar month of Sh'vat. This year, that falls from Friday evening January 29, till Saturday evening, January 30.

- Advertisement -

Flickr Photo by by Rob__

Out of winter, out of seeming death, out of seeds that sank into the earth three months before, the juice of life begins to rise again. Begins invisibly, to sprout in spring.

Beneath the official deadly failures of the Copenhagen conference that was supposed to reinvigorate the world's effort to face the climate crisis, the seeds of rebirth were growing. They were growing in the grass-roots activists who will not let our earth die so easily at the hands of Oil and Coal and governmental arrogance as the Crusher tanks and rocket-planes and the robotic Marine generals and corporate exploiters of AVATAR would like to kill Pandora and its God/dess Eywa.

Next Page  1  |  2

Rabbi Arthur Waskow, Ph. D., founded (in 1983) and directs The Shalom Center , a prophetic voice in Jewish, multireligious, and American life that brings Jewish and other spiritual thought and practice to bear on seeking peace, pursuing justice, (more...)

Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon

Go To Commenting

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Related Topic(s): ; ; , Add Tags
- Advertisement -
Google Content Matches:

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Gaza-Israel Violence: The Fuller Story

Five Steps to Burning Books

Behind the Tony Kushner story: The deeper reasons for CUNY's rejection & reversal

Howard Zinn's last advice to America: A Broad Coalition for Independence From the Corporations & the Military

The Speech Mr. Obama should give this Thursday night

Refuting The "White Savior" Attacks on Avatar Movie


The time limit for entering new comments on this article has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

Comments: Expand   Shrink   Hide  
3 people are discussing this page, with 3 comments
To view all comments:
Expand Comments
(Or you can set your preferences to show all comments, always)

Indian I consider the movie would just be a waste ... by shadow dancer on Tuesday, Jan 5, 2010 at 10:22:55 AM
If one understands the term "sociopath" then they ... by Edward Ulysses Cate on Tuesday, Jan 5, 2010 at 6:05:33 PM
Ursala LeGuin wrote one of her first stories:The W... by sometimes blinded on Wednesday, Jan 6, 2010 at 7:36:15 AM


Tell a Friend: Tell A Friend

Copyright © 2002-2016, OpEdNews

Powered by Populum