Bitter, Or Stimulating?: A Highly Logical Perspective on Maror

It's time for Maror, the Bitter Herb. This is not the Wakandan herb of leadership (because we couldn't find a GIF of it); instead it is a root that bites anyone who bites into it, filling their mouth with an unpleasant heat that, if the root is milder in flavor, fades over several minutes. It's meant to evoke the bitterness of slavery...oppression in an amuse bouche.

It's logical, if somewhat metaphorical, to draw a direct link between a bitter taste and a bitter experience. After all, the word is the same. But sometimes, sub in a different word, and it has the original meaning and then some: what if it were the "Stimulating Herb" instead of the "Bitter Herb"? True, there are other stimulating herbs, many of them even legal. But the substitution could lead us to a different logical conculsion: that the consumption of something bitter or unpleasant may actually lead to action, stimulated by that unusual taste, something that rouses us, that evokes physical disgust or a new level of awareness of the brokenness in our world.

Feeling this in our mouths, ingested into our bodies, might just inspire us to make a better world so we can all live long and prosper in freedom. Or at least, that's what we think Spock would say. 

[Image Source: GIPHY]

haggadah Section: Maror
Source: Esther Kustanowitz