Thursday, April 17, 2008

Pesach Thoughts 5768: Of Pesachs Past and Present

Sometimes I wish things went quicker, that changes happened sooner, that the society people are trying to build here was more caring…that after 60 years Israel still wouldn’t be beset with so many problems that Pesach behooves us to try and alleviate…

But as the leader of one of modern day's great stories of national liberation writes in his autobiography, it’s a Long Walk to Freedom.

There are hiccups on the way, ups and downs, years spent in the desert.

Yet just because we haven’t reached the road's end, doesn’t mean we can't express thanks that we are alive, sustained us, and allowed to see this time, of celebrating Pesach in our own sovereign state.
שהחיינו וקיימנו והגיענו לזמן הזה
p.s. I'm not sure if its good or bad that I still find old posts about Pesach relevant so thought I would allow everyone to judge for themselves.

Chag Sameach
Pesach 2006

Pesach is a festival about freedom – and what freedom means in our day and age. What freedom means when there are people who were forced out of their homes 9 months ago that are still in hotels; or when families who work full time still can’t afford to feed their children, or when young 18 year old Israeli boys are forced to make thousands of people wait in line at roadblocks.

It’s a festival that reminds us of the need to ask questions, to critique, to not take things at face value, a time for not only asking in what way this night is different to others, but in what way our year has been different, in what way we are different from last Pesach, what we have accomplished since then, who we have met, where we have traveled, who we have helped, who we have hurt…

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Pesach 2007

The Exodus story has always been reinterpreted to be meaningful…In the 20th Century, Jewish Communists celebrated being liberated from Capitalism, Jewish feminists celebrated liberation from patriarchy and early Zionists marked being free from exile and anti Semitism. Even Martin Luther King used Yetziat Mitzrayim as a paradigm for the African American struggle for equal rights.

21st century Israelis meanwhile need to take a minute to think of those in our own society who remain 'enslaved'…The festival of freedom demands us not to close our eyes to our neighbour, even when they are a different colour, gender, religion or political persuasion to us. And as long as these injustices exist, our Israeli journey isn’t complete.

Yet this morning as I went to burn my pittot in our local park, saw the excitement on the faces of the children in my secular neighbourhood as they threw crumbs into the flames…it reminded me of how far we have come…We haven’t reached the end of our own story of creating a truly egalitarian and equal society living in our Bibilical homeland in peace with our neighbours. But we’re on a journey, and I’m grateful enough to say Dayenu.

To read the rest click here

1 comment:

Lirun said...

nicely written thought.. cheers