preparations for pesach
Preparations for Pesach could begin as early as Tu b’Shvat. Some people have practiced growing their own parsley for their seders beginning by planting seeds at the “birthday of the trees.” The timing is about right, but parsley can be a bit fussy to start from seed. There may be other plants that you could sow in your garden (depending on where you live) that might grow in time to serve at your seder. In fact, parsley is a biannual. The plant from the seeds you sowed last year still produces leaves after the winter. Perhaps this is why it is chosen for dipping: Parsley is available in early spring with little effort. Tu b’Shvat is the very first blush of spring in the Land of Israel, though it may be hard for people based in the Northeast of the United States to imagine the end of winter at that date.
Purim precedes Pesach by one month and follows Tu b’Shvat by one month—and our Jewish masquerade holiday is often a time for over-indulgence of alcohol and sweets. Preparing for Pesach can mean a simple cleaning of one’s pantry to be rid of chametz defined narrowly, or defined broadly as the extraneous “stuff” that you’ve kept around. Besides doing a spring cleanse of one’s cupboards, it can also be an opportunity to reflect on bad habits or patterns that Pesach can help you refrain from. Following 7 weeks later (7×7) at Shavuot, as traditionally understood, we end our period of rebellion and wandering, entering the world where we take on the responsibilities of mitzvot and Torah.
We are only able to take on responsibility and obligations as free agents.
how will you become a free agent, ready to assume your obligations?
how do you mark time in your annual cycle?
what is “#blogexodus”?
My friend and colleague Phyllis Sommers has thought of yet a new creative way to prepare for Peasach. You can learn more here.