"Tu" (the Hebrew abbreviation of 15th) in the month of Shvat was set (Hillel's opinion generally overrules Shammai's) as the beginning of the tithable year for tree fruit: Calculating the tithe on fruit starts again for fruit that sets after that date.
Here is the quintessential Jewish question: How do we emulate God? We are told that we were created by God. We are told that we have a divine spark within us.
Accompanying student groups to the Kotel repeatedly reminds me that Israel is a place like none other. On my most recent trip, I got another reminder of that fact.
Tu BiShvat (Jewish Arbor Day) is the time of year when Israeli schoolchildren plant trees. Perhaps it’s no coincidence that a teacher instituted the tree-planting custom.