The Spiritual Gardener: Insights from the Jewish Tradition to Help Your Garden Grow

(Author) (Illustrator)

Product Details

$16.95  $15.76
Andrew N. Becker
Publish Date
5.5 X 8.5 X 0.34 inches | 0.45 pounds

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"With wry humor, earthy spirituality, and practical advice, lawyer and amateur gardener Becker tells the story of his own garden and entreats readers to plant, tend, harvest, and share their own soil in this fine debut. Explaining that he tries to live his life by the commandment of bal tashchit ("do not waste or destroy"), Becker explores different aspects of gardening and how they relate to his own spiritual thinking. He doles out tales of tending his garden, making peace with moles, slugs, and his neighbors who feed the rabbits he is determined to eject from their burrow under his garden. In an age when one can feel tethered to a phone and bombarded by information and news, Becker argues that tending to a garden allows for 'sanctified time.' For Becker, troweling, watering, mulching, and seeding provide time to relish life, and also present opportunities for him to muse about the value of humility, how to divide chores in a marriage, and the ethics of hunting, among other topics. In uncomplicated, clear prose, Becker pleasantly urges readers--even those with just a balcony--to make a space where their home can be 'infused with the Divine Presence.' Green-thumbed spiritual readers will relish Becker's welcoming memoir." -- Publishers Weekly (BookLife)

"When you open this book, you will be amazed at the wisdom of author Andrew Becker, who combines profound knowledge of gardening with a deep love of Jewish wisdom and spirituality. The quotations that he shares from the Torah, the Midrash, and the Chasidic Masters blend in seamlessly with the pragmatic suggestions on how to improve your horticultural skills. The Torah begins with Adam and Eve in the perfect Garden; with the help of this book you will find yourself transported to that primordial setting, or at least closer to it. Digging in the earth is holy work. Enjoy this wonderful book and give as a gift to like-minded friends and family members. Highly recommended." -- Rabbi J.L. Mirel, author of Stepping Stones to Jewish Spiritual Living

"Becker's prose reads without resistance, plying between the natural present and centuries of wisdom with insightful ease. His words slip into the reader's soul as deftly as pumpkin or squash seeds, or are nested in sentient soil like carrot grains on fertile seed tape. Here flower these meditations nurtured from Jewish roots and insightful horticultural dexterity. The book is divided into sections as natural and rhythmic as planting; its fruit bursts forth, cultivated, verdant, and ripe. As words are seeds themselves, this book offers from its leaves a bounty of horticultural wisdom, practical tips, spiritual inspiration, and a bounteous harvest. -- Dr. Loss Pequeño Glazier, Digital Poetics (Alabama University Press) and Anatman, Pumpkin Seed, Algorithm (Salt)

"This is the perfect read for anyone who continues to wonder why he or she sticks fingers in the dirt and prays that a seed will grow. This inspirational miracle of horticultural prose is accompanied by evocative water color illus-trations and meaningful religious quotations. I will gift this book to others who continue to ask me why I do what I do. It puts words to every gardener's life and experience since Adam graced Eden." -- Kirk R. Brown, Conversationist on Gardening Art, History and Business; Leader of Programming as John Bartram and Frederick Law Olmsted; Award-Winning Designer, Speaker, and Dramatist