Category Archives: Passover

How Deep? How High?

How much do I love you? I’ll tell you no lie. How deep is the ocean? How high is the sky? Irving Berlin wrote the song, How Deep Is the Ocean? in 1932. It consists mainly of rhetorical questions that point … Continue reading

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Leavening On Our Shelves And In Ourselves

Every year, several weeks before Passover, my personal search for leaven begins in a way that is more symbolic than actual. I approach my bookshelves where there are many books that have served their rising, yeasty purposes and are now … Continue reading

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Blossoms of Seder Night, Fruits of New Year’s Day

Rabbi Eliezer was sure that the world was created in the fall month of Tishrei, the season of the New Year. His rival, Rabbi Joshua, was equally positive that the world was created at Passover time, in the spring month … Continue reading

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The Middle Of The Story And The Story Of The Middle

On the Torah page, the miracle of Passover’s seventh day comes into view. The Torah page literally pictures Israel crossing the sea—glistening black letters against sea foam parchment.  The words are inscribed according to the script: Look! There are the people … Continue reading

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Beginnings Ripe And Ripening

Rabbi Eliezer asks:  From where do we learn that the world was created in Tishrei? From the verse: God said, let the earth sprout grasses, seed bearing plants, fruit trees of every kind on earth bearing fruit with the seed … Continue reading

Posted in Days of Awe, Holidays, Passover, Poetry, Talmud | 2 Comments

You Open For Him

Rabbi Eleazar HaKappar said:  Do not be like a lintel overhead that no one can reach; neither, be like a door beam that injures faces, nor like a raised threshold that bruises feet. Rather, be like a low threshold that … Continue reading

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A Passover Conversation in Four Voices

Four conversed about the pine tree.  One defined it according to genus, species and variety.  One held forth concerning its shortcomings in the lumber industry.  One quoted verses about pine trees in numerous languages.  One struck root, stretched out branches … Continue reading

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Where Shall We Put The Sign?

In the “movie version” of the Passover story, we watch the people of Israel paint the blood of the Passover offering on their doors as a sign that marks their houses for protection against what will be the last of … Continue reading

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Making Passover: By the Story or by the Book?

Some people learn best from stories; some prefer the rule book:  “I can’t keep a list of rules in my head.  Tell me the story and I’ll figure out what to do.”  Or, “spare me the story and just tell … Continue reading

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Telling and Being Told By the Story

In each and every generation a person is obliged to see himself as if he has gone out from Egypt.  (Passover Haggadah) Each person must bring an as if to the Pesah Seder.  The as if that I bring allows … Continue reading

Posted in Passover, Poetry | 6 Comments