Tree planting in Israel in remembrance of the victims of the Shoah
Scientology plants trees in Israel with the World Congress on Intercultural and Interreligious Dialogue, in remembrance of the victims of the Shoah
ESHTAOL, ISRAEL, March 2, 2023 – The Church of Scientology has joined the efforts of the World Congress on Intercultural and Interreligious Dialogue, to plant trees in Israel, in memory of Holocaust victims, contributing to the land task carried out by the Jewish organization Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael.
“Growing plants and keeping Israel green is both a science and an art” says the website of the organization Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael. “KKL’s three tree and plant nurseries, which are located in the country’s southern, northern and central regions, are laboratories where different species of trees and plants are grown for Israel’s forests and open spaces” continues the website.
To learn more about one of the most successful tree planting projects in the world a delegation of Scientologists visited the “Nursery Eshtaol”, managed by KKL. It is located north of Beit Shemes and near Ta’oz and Neve Shalom, south of the Tel Aviv-Jerusalem Highway. Eshtaol lies to the west of the Forest of the Martyrs and, being one of the largest forest in Israel, has become a popular recreation area with an 8 kilometer hiking trail.
The delegation of Scientologists that visited the plants and trees nursery included among them Jetmira Cremonesi (representative of the L. Ron Hubbard’s office for Europe), Ivan Arjona (President of the European Office of the Church of Scientology for Public Affairs and Human Rights), Gustavo Libardi (President of the Church of Scientology Argentina) and parishioners interested in the philosophy. They were informed by the experts in charge of the area that the nursery “provides trees and shrubs for Israel’s central region, to as far as Yokne’am in the north. There are not many sites left for planting new forests in this area, so over 350,000 saplings are grown annually for forest renewal, replacement of burnt trees and public and urban spaces”.
Through the explanations given by the expert, which even covered the philosophy according to Jewish views, of the importance of planting trees.
For example, website says “The Bible compares trees to people, and like people, they speak, expressing their needs and general state of wellbeing through their size, color, trunk density, and more. The workers at KKL-JNF’s nurseries learn to communicate with the trees, and they know that communication is good when they produce healthy trees that survive and thrive”. It is also a way of “improving in one’s own capabilities, the imperfections that this world has, and puts people to being industrious and proactive” stated the expert. “Being industrious is one of the ingredients expressed by Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard in his non-religious work ‘The Way to Happiness’ for every single person to have a better life” replied Arjona, who was fascinated by the parallelisms they found in common both in Judaism and Scientology “which I hope helps to further increase our cooperation to help take care of the planet, which is home to all creations of God, and where we can help each other to being closer to each one’s concept of the Infinity, which is the main word in Scientology when we refer to God”, concluded Arjona.
“The Eshtaol plant and trees nursery has provided trees for special occasions, including tree plantings by visiting heads of states at KKL-JNF’s Grove of the Nations, for ambassadors and others” says their website. In May 2010, Pope Benedict XVI visited Israel, and Yehiel Cohen, deputy director of KKL-JNF’s central region, chose an olive tree sapling from the Eshtaol nursery to be planted in the gardens of the President’s Residence in Jerusalem. “I was asked to choose one of our finest specimens,” Mr. Cohen said at the time. “We transported the olive tree to the President’s Residence, where the Pope completed its planting and declared it the Tree of Peace.”
In a nonstop search for the happiness of all human kind, and a more sustainable environment in which to achieve it, the delegation of Scientologists committed themselves to help increase awareness on the need to planting trees worldwide, coinciding with the words of L. Ron Hubbard when he wrote in 1981 that “If others do not help safeguard and improve the environment, the way to happiness could have no roadbed to travel on at all (…) There are many things one can do to help take care of the planet. They begin with the idea that one should. They progress with suggesting to others they should. Man has gotten up to the potential of destroying the planet. He must be pushed on up to the capability and actions of saving it. It is, after all, what we’re standing on”.