Pri Etz Hadar: Kabbalistic Text for Tu B’Shvat: Link

While explanations of the significance of Tu B’Shvat laid largely dormant during and immediately following the rabbinic period, the kabbalists of the Middle Ages ultimately developed the Tu B’Shvat Seder as a means of articulating God’s cosmic significance in our world. This ritual ultimately became outlined in the Peri Eitz Hadar, a text of the Seder that is normally ascribed to the kabbalistic movement of sixteenth century Tzafat under the leadership of Rabbi Isaac Luria.

The Peri Eitz Hadar is divided into four sections, each of which describes how the specific foods of the ritual are meant to be eaten, and includes a number of biblical, rabbinic, and, in particular, kabbalistic and zoharic texts about the holiday. While the ritual is similar to the way in which many of us observe a Tu B’Shvat Seder today, in terms of the foods eaten and the rituals recited, in many ways, the purpose of the ritual is not merely to eat certain foods and recite certain blessings, but to think about how what we eat and receive from trees bounds us up in God’s cosmic order.

According to Miles Krassen, “Implicit here is a notion of sacred cosmology, which is not limited to material existence. The kabbalists’ faith involves a hierarchy of worlds that are ontologically higher than the material world. These worlds are populated by angels and spiritual forces that span the ontological regions that separate humanity and the material world from God. Moreover, the forces in these worlds serve as conduits and sources for the divine energy that becomes manifest in nature and in Creation in general.”
-Joshua Rabin for JDC Europe

Incredible link to the “Open Siddur Project” and their Pri Etz Hadar translation and explanation from Reb Miles Krassen.

Open Siddur Project: Pri Etz Hadar

Posted on March 1, 2012, in Tu'Bshvat Teachings. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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