Monday, April 21, 2014

making my own traditions

Just last week (right after the lunar eclipse), came Spring, and renewal, and a little bit of ease from a tough few months. So I decided to set a table with gleena to celebrate:

My table is loosely based on the Passover Seder tradition, with six bowls ready for the zeroah (shank bone), charoset (apple and nuts), maror (bitter herb), karpas (green veggie), chazeret (leafy bitter green), beitzah (egg).

My family left Russia as Jewish refuges in 1979, so the story of Jews leaving Egypt resonates with me deeply. We weren’t slaves in Soviet Russia, but we were discriminated against. I did not grow up with Jewish traditions, because they were illegal during the Soviet regime, like all religions. So for me, holidays are personal interpretations. Ceremony inspired by the natural cycles of the seasons mixed in with bits of traditional services.

Passover then is a time to reflect upon my own habits, situations, and thoughts that enslave and bring unhappiness. A time to let go of doubt and fear, and to enjoy the beauty of new spring, and rebirth.

The morning after the dinner I woke up to the patch of sun on the dining room table, and this saying came to mind immediately: ”Where there is shadow, there is light.“: