The rabbis debated about our attitude toward the Ten Plagues. On one hand, they were a necessary instrument of the liberation and a just punishment for Egyptian cruelty. Yet on the other hand, they involved suffering of fellow human beings (and creatures), divine creations, in the image of God. Rabbi Simcha Cohen said: We celebrate the Exodus from Egypt, not the downfall of the Egyptians.
A modern take on the Ten Plagues labes them the Ten Fears. The plagues that God visited on the Egyptians in Egypt seem to be a parade of peoples greatest fears. They are a mythological show of the power of the living vs primal fear. Starting from the blood of Birth and Death, through the primal fear of small creatures (lice) and large ones (wild beasts), fear of financial ruin (locusts), fear of the dark (losing direction and meaning) we face our greatest fear - the fear for our children's lives and the loss of future.
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