Gleaning. Gleaning is the act of collecting leftover crops from farmers' fields after they have been commercially harvested or on fields where it is not economically profitable to harvest.
   Some ancient cultures promoted gleaning as an early form of a welfare system. According to the Book of Deuteronomy and Leviticus, farmers should leave corners of their fields unharvested, should not pick up that which was dropped, and should not harvest any over-looked produce that had been forgotten when they harvested the majority of a field.
   On one of the two occasions that this is stated in Leviticus, it adds that in vineyards, some grapes should be left ungathered, a statement also found in Deuteronomy. These verses additionally command that olive trees should not be beaten on multiple occasions, and whatever remains from the first set of beatings should be left.
   According to Leviticus, these things should be left for the poor and for strangers, and Deuteronomy commands that it should be left for widows, strangers, and paternal orphans. The Book of Ruth tells of gleaning by the widow Ruth to provide for herself and her mother-in-law, Naomi, who was also a widow.
   Jesus and his disciples practiced a form of gleaning as they walked through grain fields breaking off heads of wheat to eat. In classical rabbinic literature, it was argued that the biblical regulations concerning left-overs only applied t
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