The Green Speech Campaign: Creating Real Jewish Unity

Join the campaign and help increase respect, peace and unity during The Three Weeks.

This year, between July 11th and August 1st, thousands of people from all different religious backgrounds and denominations will join together to work on improving speech and communication. Come and join and be part of an unprecedented program of Jewish Unity! The Green Speech Campaign consists of a variety of options and formats. Study for just a day or sign up for the entire 21-day campaign. Click here for more information.

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What Is Green Speech?

By Rabbi Mike Stern and Aleeza Ben Shalom

Sticks and stones may break my bones but is it true that words will never hurt me?

It would be more accurate to say that words may harm me even more! A wound can heal…but words? Words can leave an impression that lasts a lifetime. They can truly harm us personally, in business and in our relationships

We really change our lives by changing our words. How? Through Green Speech.

The basic principles of Green Speech are:

  • Use words and speech that are inspirational, positive, encouraging, and healing, words that build others and unite us. Let’s develop tolerance and respect for one another.

  • Take time to build our self-esteem and self-worth.

  • Use words that reflect our inherent greatness. This awakens a sense of connection, collaboration and cooperation as well as the ability to foster teamwork and unity.

The goal of Green Speech is greater peace, harmony and civility throughout our communities. Nothing has a greater capacity than speech to bring us to the height of connection or to the depths of disconnection.

Why now?

The time is always right to change our words. However, there is a unique period in the Jewish calendar where we work on our respect and love for one another, as well as our ability to get along. This time period is known as the Three Weeks. The Three Weeks fall between the 17th of Tammuz and the 9th of Av, which is also known as Tisha B’ Av (July 11th – Aug 1st 2017). Tisha B’ Av is a national day of mourning that commemorates the loss of our Temples – and it was our misuse of speech specifically that lead to this time period.

Today, we still struggle with holding some words in, and getting the right words out at the right time. Addressing how we speak collectively as one people, and consciously choosing to use our speech to create greater love is a powerful and practical way to help build Jewish unity during The Three Weeks.

Let’s spread the principles of Green Speech throughout our homes, schools and communities. Click here to participate in our campaign. Together we’ll reduce negative, harmful and derogatory words. We’ll put an end to the gossip and verbal abuse that damages our mental health and causes us so much pain. When we make efforts to adopt the habits of Green Speech, we’ll be promoting awareness and consciousness, as well as the study and practice of positive words and speech.

We invite you to read the 10 Habits of Green Speech, and to take the Green Speech pledge. Consider choosing something to focus on during this time period that will hopefully carry on and improve our relationships for a lifetime.

Join the Green Speech movement and make the world a better place – one word at a time.

Comments (1)

(1) Shoshana, July 10, 2017 6:13 PM

chashuv - important

I'm still trying to learn Hebrew, so I hope chashuv is the right word. :) What you wrote of in your article and the video by Rabbi Berkovits were eloquent expressions of such a critically important topic. Thank you for spreading awareness and appealing to Jews of all kinds to join this campaign for change....


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