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☞   Earth, our Collective Home & Life-Support System

This is an archive of prayers and song composed for, or relevant to, the Earth, our collective home and life support system.

If you have composed a prayer for the Earth, please share it here.


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For prayers composed in response to (or in anxious anticipation of) ecotastrophes, please visit here.

A Prayer for Renewal by Rabbi Zalman Schachter Shalomi (2004)

This is an untitled prayer by Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, originally offered by him in an address given at the Roundtable Dialogue for the visit of the 14th Dalai Lama together with other Nobel Laureates in Vancouver, B.C., entitled “Balancing Educating the Mind with Educating the Heart.” The event was held at the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts, on Tuesday, April 20, 2004. While the video documenting the address is currently offline, thankfully the original text of the prayer is given in its transcription by Gabbai Seth Fishman. The prayer is presented here alongside an adaptation found in the High Holy Days Maḥzor of Congregation Nevei Kodesh: Jewish Renewal Community of Boulder (2018), p.36, Section 10: Prayers for Rosh haShanah. The prayer in this form, as revised by Netanel Miles-Yepez and Reb Zalman, can be found at Kol Aleph (2014) and the now defunct Sufi Hasidim website (2009). . . .

כַּוָּנָה וּבְרָכָה עַל רְאִיַּת נְחִיל רֶמֶשׂ גָּדוֹל עַד־מְאוֹד | Kavvanah and Blessing for Observing a Massive Swarm of Creeping Things, by Isaac Gantwerk Mayer

There are blessings for beautiful vistas, and there are blessings for powerful weather. But is there a blessing for giant swarms of bugs? Certainly! There just wasn’t a kavvanah for it… yet. Inspired by the appearance of Brood X in May 2021, this is a meditation and blessing for the unique experience of seeing an enormous number of non-dangerous insects. Cicadas are NOT a plague — they don’t eat crops or spread disease, but they do help revitalize the soil and keep forest ecosystems healthy. As a natural part of the universal order, we should work to see the divinity and goodness in them, even if we might normally think of them as gross. . . .

Between the Fires: A Kavvanah for Lighting Candles of Commitment, by Rabbi Arthur Waskow (the Shalom Center)

“Between the Fires: A Prayer for lighting Candles of Commitment” was composed by Rabbi Arthur Waskow, drawing on traditional midrash about the danger of a Flood of Fire, and the passage from Malachi. . . .

הָרַחֲמָן עַל שְׁנַת הַשְׁמִיטָה | Haraḥaman for the Shmitah Year, by Rabbi David Seidenberg (neohasid.org)

This Haraḥaman (prayer to the merciful or compassionate One) for the Shmitah or sabbatical year can be added to Birkat Hamazon (blessing after meals) during the whole Shmitah year, in order to remember and open our hearts to the sanctity of the land. Say it right before the Harachaman for Shabbat, since Shmitah is the grand shabbat, and right after the paragraph beginning with Bamarom (a/k/a, Mimarom). . . .

Oración por nuestra tierra | תְּפִילָת הָאָרֶץ | A Prayer for Our Earth, an ecumenical prayer by Pope Francis, translated and adapted by Rabbi David Seidenberg (neohasid.org)

An ecumenical prayer by Pope Francis from his encyclical, Laudato Si (praise be to you) from May 24th, 2015. Here’s my draft of a Hebrew translation of Pope Francis’ prayer for our earth. It turns out no one had translated it yet. The translation includes sparks from the High Holiday liturgy. I thought we should have it available for Rosh Hashanah, even though I’m sure the translation could use more work and more feedback. . . .

שְׁמַע | Shema, an interpretive translation by Rabbi Arthur Waskow (2003)

Sh’sh’sh’ma Yisra’el — Listen, You Godwrestlers! Pause from your wrestling and hush’sh’sh To hear — YHWH/ Yahh Hear in the stillness the still silent voice, The silent breathing that intertwines life; YHWH/ Yahh elohenu Breath of life is our God, What unites all the varied forces creating all worlds into one-ness, Each breath unique, And all unified; YHWH / Yahh echad! Yahh is One. Listen, You Godwrestlers! No one people alone owns this Unify-force; YHWH / Yahh is One. . . .

הושׁענות | Hoshanot by Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, translation by Gabbai Seth Fishman

A supplemental Hoshanot liturgy for Sukkot confessing a selection of humanity’s crimes against creation. . . .

כעבור סופה | After the Storm: A Prayer to Choose Life by Rabbi David Seidenberg (neohasid.org)

The prayers for hurricane victims that are circulating through the Open Siddur Project and elsewhere are poignant and heartfelt, but they don’t speak an important piece of the truth that we need to hear. What about our collective responsibility for climate disruption that undoubtedly increases the harm caused by this and every major storm? And what about the Deuteronomic promise that God brings us recompense for our actions davka through the weather? Here’s an attempt at a prayer that incorporates a deeper understanding of our responsibility. For the final version of this prayer, I started with an anonymous Hebrew translation of my original English prayer, then I tweaked it and wove in scriptural references, and retranslated it back into English. . . .

והיה אם שמע | v’haya im shemo’a: a Prayer in a Time of Planetary Danger by Rabbi Arthur Waskow

A midrashic translation/ interpretation of the second paragraph of the Sh’ma. . . .

תפילה לעולם החי | Prayer for the Living Earth by Rabbi Katy Z. Allen

I offer here a prayer for the Earth, which you may wish to use in your personal prayer practice or as part of a community to which you belong. It could be included as one of the prayers after reading the Torah. . . .

תְּפִלָּה לְמַעַן תֵּבֵל וּמְלוֹאָהּ | Prayer for the Preservation of the Environment, by Richard Shavei-Tzion

Richard Shavei-Tzion writes, “At this time when mankind is wreaking havoc on our Eco-System, we pray to God to preserve the treasure that is the earth and to grant us the wisdom to make pro-active efforts to protect it for the sake of our future generations and all which dwell upon it.” . . .

תהלים כט | Psalms 29, an interpretive translation by Avi Dolgin

Avi Dolgin’s translation of תהילים כט (Psalm 29) interweaves between the original Hebrew (הָב֣וּ לַֽ֭יהוָה בְּנֵ֣י אֵלִ֑ים | havu l’YHVH b’nei eilim) and an English language interpretation. The interpretation, while faithful to the original, leans heavily on environmental concerns, especially as seen from a North American West Coast perspective. . . .

Prayer for the Earth, Air, Water, Fire of our Planet in Memory of Barry Commoner, by Rabbi Arthur Waskow

May the words we are with Your help sharing today, Speak deeply –- with Your help — to our nation and the world. Help us all to know that the sharing of our breath with all of life Is the very proof, the very truth, that we are One. . . .

Peas on Earth, a song by the Jewish environmental educators of the Teva Learning Center (Fall 2010)

A pun filled ditty by the Fall 2010 Jewish environmental educators of the Teva Learning Center. . . .

עַל הַנִּסִּים בִּימֵי הוֹדָיָה לְאֻמִּיִּים | Al haNissim prayer on Civic Days of Patriotic Gratitude, by Aharon Varady

Opportunities to express gratitude on civic days of patriotic thanksgiving demand acknowledgement of an almost unfathomably deep history of trauma — not only the suffering and striving of my immigrant ancestors, but the sacrifice of all those who endured suffering dealt by their struggle to survive, and often failure to survive, the oppressions dealt by colonization, conquest, hegemony, natural disaster. Only the Earth (from which we, earthlings were born, Bnei Adam from Adamah) has witnessed the constancy of the violent deprivations we inflict upon each other. The privilege I’ve inherited from these sacrifices has come at a cost, and it must be honestly acknowledged, especially on secular/national days of thanksgiving, independence, and freedom. I insert this prayer after Al Hanissim in the Amidah and in the Birkat Hamazon on national days of independence and thanksgiving. . . .

A Prayer for the Earth, by Rabbi David Seidenberg (neohasid.org)

God of all spirit, all directions, all winds You have placed in our hands power unlike any since the world began to overturn the orders of creation. . . .

ברכות | Bringing blessing to all life on Earth, a d’var tefilah on making blessings over foods by Rabbi David Seidenberg (neohasid.org)

The Talmud (Brakhot 35a-b) teaches that eating food without saying a brakhah (a blessing) beforehand is like stealing. A lot of people know that teaching, and it’s pretty deep. But here’s an even deeper part: the Talmud doesn’t call it “stealing”, but מעילה ׁ(“me’ilah“), which means taking from sacred property that belongs to the Temple. So that means that everything in the world is sacred and this Creation is like a HOLY TEMPLE. . . .