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Pack Nothing. Bring only your determination to serve and your willingness to be free.
Don’t wait for the bread to rise.
Take nourishment for the journey, but eat standing, be ready to move at a moment’s notice.
Do not hesitate to leave your old ways behind - fear, silence, submission.
Do not take time to explain to the neighbors.Tell only a few trusted friends and family members.
Then begin quickly, before you have time to sink back into the old slavery.
Set out in the dark. I will send fire to warm and encourage you. I will be with you in the fire and I will be with you in the cloud.
You will learn to eat new food and find refuge in new places.
I will give you dreams in the desert to guide you safely home to that place you have not yet seen.
The stories you tell one another around your fires in the dark will make you strong and wise.
Outsiders will attack you, some will follow you, and at times you will weary and turn on each other from fear and fatigue and blind forgetfulness.
You have been preparing for this for hundreds of years.
I am sending you into the wilderness to make a way and to learn my ways more deeply.
Those who fight you will teach you. Those who fear you will strengthen you. Those who follow you may forget you. Only be faithful. This alone matters.
Some of you will die in the desert, for the way is longer than anyone imagined. Some of you will give birth.
Some will join other tribes along the way,
and some will simply stop and create new families in a welcoming oasis.
Some of you will be so changed by weathers and wanderings that even your closest friends will have to learn your features as though for the first time.
Some of you will not change at all.
Sing songs as you go, and hold close together. You may, at times, grow confused and lose your way.
Continue to call each other by the names I’ve given you to help remember who you are. You will get where you are going by remembering who you are.
Tell your children lest they forget and fall into danger -
remind them even they were not born in freedom but under a bondage they no longer remember, which is still with them, if unseen.
So long ago you fell into slavery, slipped into it unaware, out of hunger and need.
Do not let your children sleep through the journey’s hardship.
Keep them awake and walking on their own feet so that you both remain strong and on course.
So you will be only the first of many waves of deliverance on these desert seas.
Do not go back. I am with you now and I am waiting for you.
The traditional haggadah speaks of Ten Plagues by which God accomplished our liberation from Egypt. Tonight, we enumerate plagues of psychiatric conditions, which hinder our sense of wholeness, health, and freedom. For each one, our cup of joy is diminished by one drop:
Thank you for joining us for tonight’s exploration of the racism and other issues within our criminal justice system. Now it is your time to act. One of the easiest and most important things you can do is to decrease the stigmatism against those with criminal records. We encourage you to use your personal seders as an opportunity to share what you have learned and help your family and friends to feel equally invested...
Free people ask questions. We begin our Seder with questions. Although the custom is that the youngest at the table asks, tradition instructs that all must ask:
Ma Neeshtana ha-laila ha-zeh meekol ha-laylot? Sheh-bichol ha-laylot anoo ochleem chametz oo-matzah. Halailah hazeh chametz oomatz. Sheh-bi'chol ha-laylot anoo ochleem sheh-ar yerakot. Ha-lailah hazeh maror.
On Passover, Jews are commanded to tell the story of the Exodus and to see ourselves as having lived through that story, so that we may better learn how to live our lives today. The stories we tell our children shape what they believe to be possible—which is why at Passover, we must tell the stories of the women who played a crucial role in the Exodus narrative.
The Book of Exodus, much like the Book of...
To be read following the chanting of the Four Questions.
1. The Torah demands, “Justice, justice shall you pursue!” (Deut 16:20). What are the obstacles to fulfilling this commandment in the context of criminal justice?
2. The Sage Hillel taught: “That which is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow” (BT Shabbat 31a). At the heart of our Passover story is the remembrance of being...
According to the Book of Exodus, there was a famine in the land of Canaan (later known as Israel). Because of this famine, the Hebrew patriarch Jacob traveled with his extended family of 70 to Egypt to both live inbetter conditions and be with his son Joseph. Joseph’s wisdom had impressed the Pharaoh of Egypt to the point that he was appointed Viceroy of Egypt, which was second in power only to the Pharaoh.
The Voice of a Sexual Assault Survivor
What I do remember is waking up the next morning in a strange room, alone, cold, mostly naked and confused. In a panic I got my clothes together. My heart sank into my stomach as I looked down at the blood-stained sheets. I was so frightened I didn’t know what to do. I was hurriedly “pushed” out the door by the guy who lived in the...
A discussion can take place regarding with which of the four children each guest identifies most, followed by a consideration of which populations are currently "unable to ask," who might be considered "simple," and more. Examples for a new set of four children may include:
One who sees the pain of others and works to relieve suffering.
One who cares only about him/herself.
One who cares only about...
Korech: Mixing the Bitter and the Sweet
One of my favorite moments of the seder comes just before dinner is served. It is called Korech. It is also known as the Hillel sandwich. It is the moment when we eat maror (the bitter herbs) and the charoset (the sweet apple and nut mixture) on a piece of matzah. What a strange custom to eat something so bitter and something so sweet all in one...
By: Rabbi Ari Weiss At the close of the Haggadah, after moving from past humiliations to future hopes, a surprise! A piyut, or liturgical poem, first quoted in Sefer Rokeach (1160-1238), that returns to the Haggadic theme of retribution but on a deeper, more fundamental register. Nature is a "war of all against all." The cat that attacks is attacked just as the Egyptians who oppressed are oppressed....
We all know about Passover, that holiday when we Jews whip out our flat, cracker-like matzah, talk about the massive exodus from Egypt, and drink a whole lot of Manischewitz wine. As it happens, though, there are a few other things you might want to know about Passover! Here are some facts about the holiday that you probably never knew:
Passover is an...
Long ago, Pharaoh ruled the land of Egypt. He enslaved the Jewish people and made them work very hard building his cities. song: Bang bang bang
Phaoraoh was especially cruel to Jewish children. One mother hid her baby, Moses, in a basket in the river. Pharoah's daughter found him and took him home to live in the palace.
Moses grew up. He saw the slaves working so hard. He had a fight about it...
More Clips from JewBelong
(to the tune of “I Could Have Danced All Night”)
I could have eaten more,
I could have eaten more,
but it’s afikomen time.
The Seder rituals
and all those victuals,
the evening was sublime.
I had my matzo with charoset
and matzo dipped in chocolate too.
I drank down all my wine
and now I’m feeling fine.
How good to share this meal with you!
CHAD GADYA, CHAD GADYA
dizabin aba bitrei zuzei,
chad gadya, chad gadya.
dizabin aba bitrei zuzei,
chad gadya, chad gadya.
An only kid! An only kid
My father bought for two zuzim
Chad gadya, Chad gadya
Then came the cat and ate the kid
My father bought For two zuzim
Chad gadya, Chad...