Meir Panim’s Tiberias Free Restaurant not only provides warm meals, but the opportunity to socialize as well.
Interestingly, the willingness to find inspiration at the seder for the courage needed to persist in our current battles runs somewhat against the grain for some. These days, many seek to make our religious rituals “relevant” by transforming the Jewish festival of freedom into a metaphor for every cause but our own.
In these times, it sometimes feels as if to even raise the question of the Haggadah’s prophecy of an endless assault on the Jews is to run the risk of being politically incorrect. It may be easier for many of us to view Passover through the prism of other struggles, but it’s necessary to remind ourselves that it is still a tale of Jewish struggle and redemption.
That’s why students of all ages, as well as their parents, must recall that the goal of contemporary anti-Semitism is specifically to detach us from our history and our connection to Israel.
The retelling of the story of the Exodus seems to inspire free people everywhere.
Yet it also represents the aspirations of countless generations of Jews, who dreamed not merely of universal freedom but of the revival of Jewish sovereignty in the land of Israel. We owe it to them, and even more, to ourselves and to those who will come after us, to never forget that.
Refocusing on that narrative is daunting when you consider the rising support for Palestinian dreams of eradicating Israel and the world’s willingness to tolerate Iran’s faith-based drive for nuclear weapons to help accomplish that horrifying goal. In the face of such hatred, it’s possible to lose heart and to stand silent while an intellectual mob bays for Jewish blood.
But as difficult as the times may be, the words of the Haggadah, which may be hastily read or stumbled over in the rush to get to the food, can still supply us with the courage we need. It’s a lesson we must teach again to our children and ourselves. Like each Jewish generation since the Exodus that preceded us, we can dine well on the inspiration and the promise these words offer.
About the Author: Jonathan S. Tobin is senior online editor of Commentary magazine and chief political blogger at www.commentarymagazine.com, where this first appeared. He can be reached via e-mail at email@example.com.
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In modern political parlance “compassionate” is a euphemism for ever-expanding government.
A wake up call to action for the Jewish community.
The Yesh Atid-sponsored draft law is very different from what you have been reading in the haredi press and hearing from haredi politicians and activists.
National park status is, unfortunately, not an ironclad guarantee against Arab encroachment.
It’s been more than ten years since Parkinson’s moved into our home.
Still facing an effectively unhindered nuclear threat from Iran, Israel will soon need to choose between two strategic options.
God decided to cast Truth down to earth and went on to create the world.
We need to put ourselves into the eyes of Pharaoh’s daughter.
The late Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach did not belong to any religious movement, but his daughter Neshama now belongs.
Apparently there has been no let-up in Secretary of State Kerry’s drive to bring about a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians within the nine-month period he prescribed last year, which ends in April 2014.
Much attention has properly been paid to the problems inherent in the provisions of the Geneva agreement struck with Iran. There are substantial loopholes that allow Iran to run trucks through its commitments and Iran seems to have been able to blunt the full court press that had been mounted against it in the form of economic sanctions and threats of military force.
All these polls asked either “Do you agree that Israel is conducting a war of extermination against the Palestinians?” or, alternatively, “Do you agree Israel behaves toward the Palestinians like the Nazis do?”
Of course, believing in God doesn’t make one Jewish. Many people identify themselves as Jews for a host of reasons other than believing in the God of Israel, and they are just as Jewish as the most pious Jew. Being Jewish is a birthright, not a belief right. According to halacha, anyone born of a Jewish mother is Jewish. Period.
Like Chamberlain, Obama sued the ayatollahs for peace, insisting the only alternative to appeasement is war.
As frustrating as it may be for Israel’s critics, support for Zionism is baked into the DNA of American politics.
Netanyahu’s speech was far from the denunciation of the peace process that some of his detractors are depicting.
Iran’s real boss, Supreme Leader Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, was wise to back Rouhani’s play.
The professor claims Israel’s collapse will lead to an alliance between secular Palestinians and post-Zionist Jews and others to build a secular democracy.
J Street is at odds with the man they once served as his main Jewish cheerleaders.
Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/refocusing-on-the-haggadah-narrative/2007/04/15/
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