We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Now THAT'S the difference between Jews and gentiles. :)
The traditional text read at the seder has the conversational, multi-voiced format of the Talmud. It suggests/records spirited conversation. The name of this text is the "Hagaddah" which literally means "the telling over" - and it is purposely set in the home, to encourage dialogue.
I hope you have a healthy and holy meal. I have been enjoying the Seder since my second marriage. My father in law Seders took hours with note cards and dogged eared copies of Biblical Archeology. ( We ate on page 57)
We celebrate on Sat. this year and matzoh ball soup and wine are just what I'm looking forward to. Nothing like wine to assist story, song and of course, veritas.
(The dinner party context of the essential Jewish story/ritual reminded me of Steven's description from the Supeme Fiction "It must give pleasure")
I only once had a meal in deliberate silence, in a monestary; it was different.
Dear Mr. Kessler: I am writing to ask how does one go about getting the Rabbi community to help an outsider obtain justice and restitution from members of the Jewish community?
This small group of individuals do not represent every member of your religious community, but they have used their social network to blacklist a man who worked for them for 12 years. A man who could no longer abide by the loss of moral direction, and whose family could no longer survive on 40% salary. Yet, it was a man whose work they desperately wanted to control. When these people broke my husband's contract, we left--they blacklisted.
How can I find a Rabbi to help me resolve this situation? I know the other important celebration within your tradition is "Atonement". How does an outsider get members within to atone for the harm they have caused with deliberate malice?
Thank you and Rejoice!
There are usually (except in smaller towns) two or more synagogues or temples in town. If your husband has a dispute with that shul, contact the rabbi of the other one. Or contact the rabbi of any nearby town, and make your case. We Jews do tend to stick together, it's true - but justice is a greater virtue than loyalty.
Don't know the details of your situation, but I will reply assuming you are dealing with an Orthodox community...
In large orthodox communities, there will be a Bet Din (court of law) that ostensibly functions according to Jewish law. In most US jurisdictions, they have the authority of binding arbitration. However, they can be sadly blighted with the same "circle the wagons" insularity your post hints at.
I would approach any Bet Din or Rabbinical board that exists, and then turn to the regular court system if they prove to be partial.
I don't know of any parallel structures in non-orthodox communities. The logical place to start is the Rabbi of the synagogue that the parishioner(s) you're arguing with attend.
In the Orthodox Christian church, we are taught that the Sunday Liturgy is what the Seder became in the Christian tradition. We do use wine, come on over and visit. :-)
By the way, when I converted to Christian Orthodxy I was told in jest that it was a rubric to have a bottle of 30 year old single malt scotch blessed, then shared at the breaking of the fast after the Pascha (Easter) liturgy. Yes I fell for it, but made many freinds that morning.
The whole PURPOSE of the Seder, and the reading of the Haggadah is to TALK ABOUT IT!
The Seder plate, and the traditional foods, beginning the Seder with your hat and coat and ready to travel, are supposed to be a "multi-media presentation", and it's supposed to prompt questions; specifically, the ritual "Four Questions", starting with "Why is this night different from all other nights?
Matzoh ball soup; you're definitely missing a treat! GREAT stuff.
Gefilte fish is best taken in small doses; I recommend the Manichevitz "Fishlets" rather than the bigger fish balls. But it's still good.
Matzoh; These days, it's a saltine cracker without the salt. But in biblical times, there was no "yeast"; "leavening" was more in the line of what we today would call "sourdough starter". "Bread" was "sourdough bread". It took a couple of hours to rise, and the Hebrews didn't HAVE a couple of hours, so they took their unrisen dough and baked it flat and fast.