To all my Madlik friends, let me take this opportunity to wish you a liberating Passover. In preparing for the Seder, I found myself going over some previous posts, for many of which I had forgotten the punch-lines. I’m happy to share below (scroll down to bottom) on the Wise and Evil Son and on Pour out Your Wrath.
Since my daughter is, please God getting married this summer, I also share below an intro to kiddush this year on Shabbat/Yom Tov. Feel free to share with other parents and couples in Wedding Planner mode.
The Seders are special this year because they occur on Shabbat. In the special kiddush that we recite we note the difference between the holiness of Shabbat and the holiness of the Festival.
As Rabbi Sachs writes:
The two forms of holiness — Shabbat and festivals – are different. Shabbat represents creation. The festivals represent redemption. Shabbat is about the presence of God in nature. The festivals are about the presence of God history. Accordingly Shabbat was declared holy by God Himself at the culmination of creation. God “blessed the seventh day and declared it holy” (Gen. 2:3). The festivals, by contrast, are sanctiﬁed by the Jewish people through their determination of the calendar – just as redemption takes place in history when we act in partnership with God. Thus on Shabbat we end the Kiddush by saying Mekadesh haShabbat, meaning that it is God who sanctifies Shabbat; but on festivals we say Mekadesh Yis’rael vehazemanim, meaning, “God sanctifies Israel, and Israel in turn sanctiﬁes time.” Shabbat is holiness “from above to below.” The festivals are holiness “from below to above.”
Rabbi Sachs could have added, that the three biblical words for festival all imply a meeting, a journey, a dating-dance or pilgrimage. Moed is a meeting as in the Ohel Moed; the moveable tabernacle in the desert. Regel as in the Shelosha Regalim (the Three Pilgrimage Festivals) literally means foot and Hag as in Hag Sameach comes from the same root as the Arabic word for the Haj, a once-in-a-lifetime pilgrimage. Hag, comes from חָגַג châgag; to move in a circle, to march in a sacred procession, to observe a festival; by implication, to be giddy:—celebrate, leap, dance, reel to and fro.
The only other time we make such a wonderful kiddush is under the wedding Huppah when we sanctify the wine twice. The marriage ceremony is called Kedushin – kiddush in the plural. Successful marriages contain this double entendre.
According to many traditions, marriages are made in heaven. There is even a Midrash that claims that God stays busy after creating the world by matchmaking. This is the kiddushin of the Sabbath. When two kindred souls (separated before birth or at the foot of Sinai) find each other and re-unite.
But the second kiddushin is equally significant and it is a reciprocal meeting, it includes happenstance and seizing of the moment, it contains the mating dance of a first date. It is a lifelong journey together, step by step on a-once-in-a-life-time heartfelt yet at the same time giddy pilgrimage. This is a marriage that grows stronger and flourishes over time.
It is these two miracles and possibilities of holiness that we celebrate when Shabbat and Festival coincide and which we shall all celebrate under the movable tabernacle called a Huppah in the near future!
Oh… and did I mention that when a festival falls on the Shabbat you add LOVE (b’Ahava).
wise guy – on the wise son