awesome ultimate expert hen (mdyesowitch) wrote,
awesome ultimate expert hen
mdyesowitch

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Need place. Place to gather, to fight, to organize...to help save galaxy on the side of light.

So this weekend was all about organization.
Not the Pats, although they have a great organization, but it's not the same.
I set up the aforementioned cubes in the closet and started stacking shirts.
Hoppie: Hey! I forgot I had these shirts!
Exactly.
I have one side of 1.5 levels filled with white shirts, and most of the other side of one layer filled with dark shirts. Then I gave up and went back to reading.
Set up the bookcase in the kitchen last night too. Wow, that was easy.
It took longer to bring it up the stairs (or uncrate it. Or sweep out the space it went into) than to set it up. Setting it after removing it from the box look less than 30 seconds. I like it. I may be switching to these for bookcases. They're expensive, but worth it. Light and sturdy. I just have to sell hoppie on the idea.
Anyway, that now has the telephone and the answering machine on the top shelf, and some of our favorite cookbooks on the second shelf. I'm so proud.
My next project is to plant the chia herb garden. Yes, I know. I don't care.


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2/6/05 Haggadah class
This is a rare occasion where you can both tell the story and fulfill a mitzvah. The Mitzvah is threefold:
1: Remember that you came out of Egypt - this requires you to go back into Egypt; to recreate the feeling of being there.
2. Your children must be aware of it. It's a standard obligation of educating your children, but this is explicitly called out. What's the difference between this and other mitzvot where you aren't explicitly called out to educate the children?
3. It shouldn't happen again. Somehow you must create within the story telling the princible that you will never be slaves again. But this has happened again? How can you teach that it won't happen again? 4/5th of the Jewish community was lost, never left Egypt. Is this a reference to magnitude of events: the Holocaust, for example, killed 6 million of 18 to 20. Is that what will never happen again? That percentage? Saying Hallel within the Seder celebrates the fact that it will never happen again.
For instance, you can't say a blessing like "ha'gomel" for a heart attack, because you don't know it will never happen again. Hallel indicates that we believe it will never happen again. The story is in the past, it will never happen again, and therefore we celebrate and sing.
Which part of this story will never happen again?

Hagadda has basic opening: candles, kiddush, etc.
The unusual stuff starts from Maggid, which is after the kiddish.

Ha Lachma - This is the only paragraph that isn't in Hebrew (it's in Aramaic). Why does it lead off in Aramaic?
The predominate answer is - this was the language of the people at the time this story was written and they wanted people to open up the story with the language they are comfortable with.
Meaning, this was not part of the Haggadah at the time of the Temple. Aramaic is the language of Babylon. The Temple Haggadah starts with Ma Nishtama. No point in saying "we are here" vs "we will be in Israel", during Temple times, you were in Israel.

Matzah - bread of affliction. (more like bread of freedom) - Vilna Gaon says that this was a type of bread that Jews had to eat during their slavery in Egypt. They wanted to eat different bread when they left, and they wanted to make real bread, but G-d made it that they had to rush so it couldn't rise, because G-d didn't want them to celebrate with real bread until they were really out of Egypt.

What does it mean to be slaves now and free next year?

Whoever is hungry let him come and eat - we even invite non-Jews in to eat with us. Charity spans all nations and transcends all religions.
Whoever is in need (of a Seder to practice at) must stick around until he completes the obligation. In order to fulfill the act of helping a Jew fulfill the Mitzvah, he must be there until the afikomen.

In Miyuchos L'Rashi, there is an alternate explanation. The reason it's in Aramaic, is to foil the spiritual entities who want to come in and spoil the seder when you invite them in. They don't understand Aramaic, so they don't come in. This is backed up by other sources, such as Jeremiah who speaks to the Jews about monotheism defined by the fact that no one else created the universe.
Jeremiah's verse is Aramaic except for the last word. Jeremiah wanted the world to recognize that there was no intermediary between the Jewish people and G-d, so it's aramaic so the people had no association to the angels.

Shimon Bar Yochai speaks about creation as the establishment of monotheism from the first verse of the Torah.

Aramaic is a classless language, in a sense. But then by contrast, the Talmud Balvi is written in Aramaic.
Looking at Talmud, we examined a passage where it describes the visits of R. Elazer to the sick. He would say a blessing either in Hebrew or Aramaic.
The Talmud says that the angels don't understand Aramaic, and that's why normally you don't pray for someone in Aramaic, although G-d hears your prayers.

But from the commentaries on Joseph's story, the angel Gabriel teaches him 70 languages (including aramaic), so the angels obviously know Aramaic.

Historically the spiritual language of the people is Hebrew. The Jewish people didn't speak Hebrew in Egypt. Hebrew was a sacred language used for spiritual things.

After the destruction of second Temple, where Jews had bad energies (Temple wasn't functioning, bad feeling between people, community was loosing it's language and spiritual identity.), people started using Hebrew for the mundane.

Aramaic started to be the language people were learning in.
Rabbis complained that the language was weakened.

It's secularizing Judaism, and that's why it's considered vulgar or simply uncalled for.

However the Talmud is written in Aramaic because it's the people's language; we're out of Israel, we don't have the holy language.

Relating back to the Haggadah, our relationship with G-d is in a way, void of all external spiritual energy because we can communicate with G-d without angels, without the spiritual energy of Hebrew; we have us and G-d and it transcends language.
We open our Seder in that language which is beyond the power of angels.
Re (Tosfot, Rashi's son from his second marriage) says, One Angel, at the very least, understands Aramaic: Gabriel. (from the Talmud, already quoted above from commentaries on Joseph), But to go further, how can angels who know the thoughts of men, not know the languages of men? How can they not know Aramaic?

Rashi's grandson, the Rashbam completed his gemorah writing, and he explains the Ha Lachma like this: He questions why we open up the seder talking about the poor.
It's always a Mitzvah to help the poor, why call it out explictly as the opening of the seder?
Symbolically it's a poor man's bread, so we share it with poor people, say the commentaries.

Rashbam bring the Bava Basra from the Gemorah, which states that charitable acts bring the redemeption closer. The reason (to go all the way back to point #3) why the enslavement will never happen again is because we are performing charity to bring the redemption closer even within the confines of the Seder. Therefore go out and bring someone in to hasten the redemption personally, and show both symbolically and actually the desire for redemption.

To fullfill the reanacting of slavery, we dip in salt water, eat bitter herbs, poor bread, etc, to put ourselves in the place of those who went out.
To fulfill the mitzvah of redemtion we say Hallel, but that's comparable to telling the story of leaving, it's not real, it's not active. How can we act out redemption? We act it out by performing acts of charity.
Some Rabbis say drinking the wine is part of it. (but first Kiddish definitely isn't it santifies the holiday, but the second cup is with the meal, and the third is with the festive meal...)

If you're not bringing someone in, you can't fulfill that aspect of the mitzvah. (One of the ways you can fulfill the Mitzvah is to give money for Matzah for poor people.)
The Shulchan Aruch has laws surrounding helping people with Seder. Giving money to allow other people to afford a seder fulfills this mitzvah.

A Sefardic commentary asks the question "why Ha Lachma" and he quotes the Mishnah which is to establish in advance that it's a poor man's meal. In advance of serving the meal you need to announce that you're a poor man and you're feeding them a poor man's meal. This reduces your obligation, and allows you to fulfil your guest obligation, and allows you to do your work (Maggied) before you eat, which would not be the case without this disclaimer.
The Alter Rebbe writes: based on Nedarim in the Gemorah - The worst punishment G-d will inflict on you is lack of understanding. He has understanding, has everything. He who doesn't have understanding, what does he have?
True poverty is lack of knowledge.
This the bread of person who lacks knowledge (poor). The story tonight is of a people who have lost the knowledge of their relationship with G-d.

In Egypt our intellect became impoverished, and tonight we try to broaden our spiritual understanding, through the bread of knowledge.
Tags: chores, hoppie, house, religion
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