Today's Theme: Abundance

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The Day of the First Fruits or Shavuot usually falls in May or early June, but in this grey Seattle Summer we’ve only just now begun to reap our harvest. Cate’s been tending a little pot of green beans and nasturtiums on the playhouse porch. A few days ago our housemate Sharon came beaming in from the backyard telling Cate to go peek in on her pot. Cate couldn’t be more delighted as she scampered about the yard holding two perfect green beans, the first of her tiny harvest. To show our gratitude for ‘the fruit of the vine’ we followed the Jewish tradition of marking our first fruits with a red cord, marking them as a sacrifice of thanksgiving. Like many of the ancient sacrifices held in the Temple, after the prayers and the ceremony (in this case the tying of a ribbon bow) we turned our offering into a communal feast, and I carefully cooked these two beans separately from the rest of our farmer’s market stash for dinner.

This past year I’ve been working on the concept of abundance, trying to embed in my psyche the idea that there is always enough — enough power, enough talent, enough opportunity — for everyone, If. IF we practice community. If we stop hording. If we open our eyes to the needs of others. If we live generously there is always enough for a feast.

Dayenu, it is enough.

A Prayer for Shavuot:
Blessed are You, Lord our God, Ruler of the Universe,
who has kept us in life, sustained us, and enabled us to reach this season.

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Suebob August 16, 2007 at 2:36 pm

Beautiful, and a beautiful tradition.

Re: your tagline – I wrote my sister’s obit to include “She collected bowling balls, shiny objects and good friends wherever she went.” I love shiny things, too!

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Elaine August 16, 2007 at 7:45 pm

Oh, Magpie Girl, I love everything you write but I want to frame this post and keep it forever.

It’s a perfect composition of picture, story, lesson and meditation: Cate’s open hands gently cradling the ribbon-tied beans; celebrating Shauvot, in your own way; your insight into abundance and how to sow, nurture, harvest and share it; a prayer.

Thank you, Rachelle. What a beautiful, meaningful ceremony you created and described.
Yes, I’m sure I will print this post and if I don’t frame it, I will still tuck it into the container where I save seeds so I can re-read it early next Spring.

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Susan Young August 16, 2007 at 8:55 pm

Cate! Great beans! I’m so proud you’ve grown beans. And do you eat beans too?! Beans are such great growing food. Here in California, growing vegetables is a bit easier because the growing season(s) are longer. Might there still be time for me to grow beans? I hope so. Alberto likes to eat them too. Much love and happy eating!

Rachelle, As soon as I saw the red ribbon I thought of Shavot. You’ve trained me well.

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Deb August 20, 2007 at 10:24 am

why is abundance so hard for some of us to get?? I so appreciated your words as they are my focus as well for a few years now. you are my heroine, thanks so much for all you share.

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Illimbblord December 16, 2008 at 2:58 pm

Very usefull post, i think i will use it.
Thanks.

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