Hanniel Levenson, In the Garden with You

oil and acrylic paint markers on Canvas, 48"x72


About In the Garden with You: The garden of Eden for me is an inititaion and not necessarily a destination. Through the text as well as midrashim and kabbalistic teachings I sought to explore on a visual level this dynamic foundational story through paint. From the reader, through the characters and onto the canvas I am exploring an eternal moment. In this painting I learn about fear suffering and love, caring for our earth, and seeking the hidden reflection of the divine through it all. In the Garden with You seeks out the tree of life found within each on of us. Every Seventh year our Torah calls upon us to not work the land. To let it rest, rejuvenate, heal. What would it be like if we, as a global community, took these teachings into our hearts and out into action. If we embodied the wisdom of Shmitah.Where we look at the earth as the source of all life in need of care and not a resource to be profited from. When we can look at all beings as children – all equal all holy – and do what is right and just. We might be able to experience a slice of Eden, or at least allow Eden to blossom for our future generations. Eden, is a memory and template of a time when we coexisted with each other, animals and the Earth. Our actions can draw Eden into our lives. We don’t have to go anywhere to find Eden – we can create it – allow it to emerge right here and now. Shmitah is an invitation to quest to see the divinity in the earth and the divinity within each of us. To witness the sacred in all, and allow this truth to lead us towards balance, sustainability, equality, justice. To live in the garden of Eden is to remember the possibility of paradise, and the potential to grow it here and now. Through our love for each other and the Earth.

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