A Meaningful Passover

The tradition of Passover gives us an opportunity, once a year, to remember the reality of slavery and liberation.
The lesson is simple in form, but hard to fully comprehend. In our day and age we expect the people in power to be kind, compassionate, and we recoil when we think they are exercising their power too brazenly. We expect that governments not deal with their citizens with violence, and that citizens have the right to say whatever they would like to their governments. We expect to be free.
But the story of Passover relates to us that this freedom is not a priori. It reminds us that we too were slaves, and how hard that slavery was for our ancestors. It reminds us that freedom, unfortunately, is often paid in blood and darkness and the death of the first born.
We, born free like Moses, bear the same responsibility; we are charged with calling on the Pharaohs of our day and telling them to let our people go. Like Moses, some of us argue that we cannot do it, that we are not able. Who are we, they ask, to lead the people? We are the free, those blessed with freedom, with the ability to see the promised land of liberty and democracy—who have seen the taskmaster whip the slave and should not stand idle any longer.
If Moses had refused, would we be free today? If we refuse, will the human beings living under tyranny today be free tomorrow?
I wish you a meaningful and happy Passover.


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