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Whats the point of sitting at a table for two hours re-reading the same story every year? To follow traditions that are not relevant to our society today. Yet I still sit there every year, silent. Waiting for the only part I can connect to... the eating.
I like the idea of Kiddish, sitting around with your family, thanking g-d for the wine. About to relax... Bu the truth of kiddish is that its 30 impatient and hungry family members, sitting in a room full of food. How in any way is that relaxing?
How does dipping Karpas into salt water remind us of the tears our ancestors had? I get it tears are salty... but why do we even want to be reminded of those horrible days when were supposed to be celebrating our freedom?
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.
Sheh-bi'chol ha-laylot ayn anoo mat-bee- leen afeeloo pa-am echad. Ha-laila hazeh sh'tay pi-ameem. Sheh- bi'chol ha-laylot anoo ochleem bayn yoshveen oo-bayn misoobeen. Ha-laila hazeh koolanoo misooveen.
Why is this night of Passover different from all other nights of the year? On all other nights, we eat either leavened or unleavened bread. Why on this night do we eat only matzah? On all other nights, we eat vegetables of all kinds. Why on this night must we eat bitter herbs? On all other nights, we do not dip vegetables even once. Why on this night do we dip twice greens into salt water and bitter herbs into sweet charoset? On all other nights, everyone sits up straight at the table. Why on this night do we recline and eat at leisure?
Asking questions is an important part of the Seder. Encourage everyone at the table to ask not just the questions listed in the book, but whatever question comes to mind during the Seder. The Seder is designed for distraction, digression, and discussion. So, if you don’t finish the whole thing tonight...there’s always tomorrow, or next year! What would be your four questions?
If they can ask these 4 questions then Im gonna ask mine:
Other then continuing tradition whats the point this?
Why only sons? What about the daughters who are just as important!
Use this piece in tandem with the telling of the Exodus story. Think about the connection between the Jewish story of Exodus from Egypt to more contemporary examples of persecution and forced migration. How did the formation of the territory now known as the United States depend upon the forced migration of people already residing on the land?
The Hebrews’ Exodus from Egypt is a climactic moment in the Passover story. After suffering for generations as slaves in Egypt, the Hebrews cross the Sea of Reeds and head into the desert with only matzah, the bread of affliction. Led by Miriam and Moses, the community seeks its freedom from slavery, oppression, and violence by wandering in the desert for forty years. Though this is a long struggle, the Hebrews’ persistence leads them to the Promised Land.
More contemporary examples demonstrate that forced migrations are not a thing of the past. In 1863 and ’64, the United States government forcibly removed the Navajo Nation from its ancestral homeland in Arizona, Utah, New Mexico, and Colorado. Prior to this forced move, the US Army went to war with the Navajo and Apache tribes, destroying much of their community. The US Army, led by Kit Carson, then forced 8,500 Navajo people to march 400 miles to their internment in Bosque Redondo, a forty square-mile area. This is now known as the Navajo Long Walk.
Over 200 people died after walking through the harsh winter for two months. Many more perished after arriving in the barren Bosque Redondo reservation, where disease, crop failure, and poor irrigation made survival almost impossible. The Navajos also had their own “bread of affliction.” They were given meager rations of only flour and coffee beans, but because the coffee beans were unfamiliar to this community, they tried to boil them and starved.
After the Navajo were recognized as a sovereign nation under the Treaty of 1868, they returned to their homeland on the Arizona- New Mexico border (one of very few tribes who were allowed to do so). Though their lands were greatly reduced by the US Army and government, the Navajo worked hard to take care of their livestock and rebuild their community.
Can you draw parallels between the Jewish Exodus from Egypt and the Navajo Long Walk? What are the key similarities and differences between these histories? What do you know about the long-term effects of forced migration and persecution on contemporary American Indian communities?
As we observe Passover to commemorate the hardships of our ancestors, how can we act in solidarity with American Indian communities’ histories of persecution, forced migration, and genocide?
With a finger, remove a drop of wine from your cup and wipe it on your plate, as each plague is mentioned...
Slaying of the First Born
Getting the family drunk is not a good way to hope they forget about not following traditions the other 364 days of the year.
Washing our hands again? Wow G-d must really be a germaphobe.
This part I actually cant complain about, because I think it tastes good. :)
FINALLY FOOD! Now I can stop being so pessimistic and enjoy my food and family!
Tzufan is a fun activity. Its the Afikoman part where you hide the matzah, and anyone tries to find it. It is a fun thing to do.
Wow I think this is about the time when all the adults get crunk.
I actually enjoy the part after the Seder, where we get to be happy with out family and joke around.