The Telling

The Telling

Apr 2, 2015 By David Hoffman | Commentary | Pesah

This Friday evening we will gather with family and friends. We will sit down to beautifully set tables, and each of us will open one of the most popular and well-known of Hebrew books—the Haggadah. The name of the book comes from the Hebrew verb lehagid (“to tell”), and if we were to translate “haggadah” into English, it would be “the telling.” Not surprisingly, the core of the Haggadah is the section called maggid, a word that also derives from the Hebrew root meaning “to tell.” Clearly these two forms of the verb lehagid communicate the centrality of the activity of “telling” on this night. But here things become less clear.

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“Echad Mi Yodea” (“Who Knows One?”)

“Echad Mi Yodea” (“Who Knows One?”)

Apr 2, 2015 By Sarah Diamant | Commentary | Pesah

Echad Mi Yodea” is a traditional cumulative-number song found in the Haggadah. Each verse circles back to the Oneness of God.

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The Four Parents

The Four Parents

Mar 27, 2015 By Arnold M. Eisen | Commentary | Pesah | Shabbat Hagadol

Let’s think for a moment, inspired by one of the seder’s most famous passages, about the four kinds of parents who are found around the seder table: wise, wicked, innocent, and not knowing how to ask.

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Does Judaism Oppose Slavery?

Does Judaism Oppose Slavery?

Mar 26, 2015 By David C. Kraemer | Short Video | Pesah

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Reclining For Equality

Reclining For Equality

Mar 26, 2015 By Judith Hauptman | Short Video | Pesah

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Freedom And Responsibility

Freedom And Responsibility

Mar 26, 2015 By Rachel Rosenthal | Short Video | Pesah

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Into The Wilderness

Into The Wilderness

Mar 26, 2015 By Alisa Braun | Short Video | Pesah

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“This Year We Are Slaves”: How and Why Do We Celebrate Freedom in the Face of Oppression?

“This Year We Are Slaves”: How and Why Do We Celebrate Freedom in the Face of Oppression?

Apr 18, 2014 By Eliezer B. Diamond | Commentary | Pesah

What does it mean to celebrate Passover in the shadow of death?

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The Meaning of the Shmurah Matzah

The Meaning of the Shmurah Matzah

Apr 18, 2014 By Matthew Berkowitz | Commentary | Pesah

One of the centerpieces of seder night is the eating of matzah, the unleavened bread.

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Preparing for Seder Part 3—Visual Midrash on the Four Children

Preparing for Seder Part 3—Visual Midrash on the Four Children

Apr 11, 2014 By Samuel Barth | Commentary | Pesah

The four children (formerly known as the four sons) are among the most provocative part of the seder—for children provoke their parents. That is why Elijah is needed to restore peace between the generations. The evolution of the text as we find it in our Haggadah is complex, and interesting explanations can be found in the recent JTS collection of Sound Bytes of Torah for Passover on YouTube. I have long been fascinated by the interpretation in imagery that offers four books, presumably each book representing one of the four “types” of child. But which one is which?

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For Millennials and Their Families

For Millennials and Their Families

Apr 10, 2014 By Arnold M. Eisen | Commentary | Pesah | Shabbat Hagadol

I gathered six students from JTS’s undergraduate Albert A. List College of Jewish Studies in my office last week to talk about the ways in which family dynamics add meaning—and tension—to family Passover seders. I wanted to find out how these dynamics play out at the seders of my students, and share their insights with you here—millennials and college students, teens and tweens—in the hope that our discussion about the holiday will enrich yours.

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Why Is This Historic Event Different From All Other Historic Events?

Why Is This Historic Event Different From All Other Historic Events?

Apr 8, 2014 By Burton L. Visotzky | Short Video | Pesah

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The Bitter Truth

The Bitter Truth

Apr 8, 2014 By David C. Kraemer | Short Video | Pesah

This short video details the history of maror and suggests the possibility of a maror tasting to reflect on what best symbolizes slavery at a seder.

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Elijah’s Cup: A Time For Family Reunion

Elijah’s Cup: A Time For Family Reunion

Apr 8, 2014 By Daniel Nevins | Short Video | Pesah

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The Gefilte Fish On My Seder Plate

The Gefilte Fish On My Seder Plate

Apr 8, 2014 By Anne Lapidus Lerner | Short Video | Pesah

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Singing The Seder

Singing The Seder

Apr 8, 2014 By Nancy Abramson | Short Video | Pesah

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Two Kinds Of Freedom

Two Kinds Of Freedom

Apr 8, 2014 By Eliezer B. Diamond | Short Video | Pesah

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Men And Women: In The Kitchen And At The Seder

Men And Women: In The Kitchen And At The Seder

Apr 8, 2014 By Judith Hauptman | Short Video | Pesah

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The Right Answers For The Wrong Questions

The Right Answers For The Wrong Questions

Apr 8, 2014 By Julia Andelman | Short Video | Pesah

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Sharing Blessings For The Afikoman

Sharing Blessings For The Afikoman

Apr 8, 2014 By Lisa Gelber | Short Video | Pesah

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