Of the many Passover rituals, there is one that strikes me as particularly strange - the dipping of parsley in salt water. Many Haggadahs give the midrash that parsley signifies Spring and rebirth, while salt water symbolizes our tears in Egypt. Other Haggadahs give no explanation of the karpas ritual at all.
Motivated to keep the seder on a timeline, many of us eat the parsley and move forward, hoping that the meal will come soon. This year, though, I’d like to encourage you to pause for parsley, and consider the follow alternative explanation offered by Rashi:
If this commentary illuminates the true meaning of the karpas ritual, isn’t this a peculiar start to the seder? On one hand we are prepared to celebrate freedom while on the other hand we symbolically drag out the family’s dirty laundry: the horrific episode wherein our ancestors got jealous, sought to kill their brother, and then sold him into slavery.
On Passover, the questions are always better than the answers.
This year, I offer you this question to consider: What do we gain by recalling the misdeeds done unto Joseph?
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