My Jewish Learning

Nature & the Environment Quiz

The environment impacts so many aspects of life, from the air we breathe to the water we drink. How much do you know about green issues in Jewish thought and practice?

Question 1. Which of these traditions presents a challenge for Jewish families trying to balance traditional practice with environmental sensitivity?
 Shofar on Rosh Hashanah
 Matzah on Passover
 Bonfires on Lag Ba'Omer
 Tzitzit every day


Question 2. Which of the following was a major ecological concern in talmudic times?
 Waste disposal
 Water pollution


Question 3. Which of these statements about shehita (the process of kosher slaughtering) is true?
 Jewish law wants the butcher to look in the eyes of the animals before he or she kills it
 Shehita is generally understood to cause less suffering to the animal than modes of slaughter that do not guarantee immediate death
 It is the cleanest and most efficient method of killing an animal
 The violence is quick and brutal, which is what is mandated by King David in the Book of Samuel


Question 4. The ancient compilation known as Perek Shirah (Chapter of Song), is based on what idea?
 Singing is the way to get closest to God
 Each animal species sings its own particular hymn to God
 Forests are places full of natural songs to God
 Bird songs are the most organic prayers


Question 5. According to the book of Deuteronomy 11, when humans do good things, what will God provide in return?
 Rain and abundance


Question 6. Where in the Bible is the commandment to tend to and till the world?
 In Genesis, at the beginning of the Torah
 In Exodus, when the Israelites are freed from slavery
 In Deuteronomy, just before the people enter the Land of Israel
 In Isaiah, when the prophet decries humanity's actions


Question 7. According to medieval commentator Don Isaac Abravanel, the Torah emphasizes sustainability through its discussions of which of the following mitzvot?
 Dietary laws
 Shooing a mother bird away when taking her eggs
 Not wearing clothing with linen and wool mixed together