We are delighted to present our suggestion for talking Israel at the Seder table. This leaflet was produced by our friends at the UJIA in the UK, at their initiative.…
Spark: On Passover, we recall the 4 words of redemption in the Torah that correspond to the 4 cups of wine we drink. However, there are actually five words of redemption, which should correspond to the fifth cup. The fifth word of redemption is והבאתי – I will bring you [to the land of Israel]. Most Jews in the world today are safe from oppression, discrimination, slavery, etc. But our redemption is not complete until we are brought to Israel. Does redemption only come when we are literally brought to Israel to live there or can we bring ourselves to Israel in different ways? What still needs to be brought to Israel to make our redemption complete?
Spark: Taking the Jewish people from Egypt purposefully put the Jewish people into situations that would be incredibly challenging. This is to teach us that any worthwhile, meaningful endeavor, like taking the Jews from Egypt or creating a State of Israel, will naturally come with significant challenge.
Tu Beshvat is mentioned in the Mishna not as a holiday but as the cut off date in determining tithes and orlah. (See lesson 9 on the mitzvot of the land of Israel). Despite these humble beginnings the day has evolved into a holiday commemorating our connection to the land of Israel and its natural bounty. In this class we will trace the evolution of the day and the different meanings it has acquired throughout the ages. We will try to understand the reasons behind the significance each age chose to emphasize and how the different interpretations reflect a changing connection to the land of Israel.