Pro­duc­ing con­tent on the Web since 1995.


some say­ings of ר‘משבצונה“ל

For many years I have worked hard, and strug­gled with mas­ter­ing virtuous. Now, in addi­tion, I’m work­ing on becom­ing more virtual.
This is an expres­sion of that effort.
* * * * * * *

השיבנו ה‘ אליך ונשובה חדש ימינו
כעוד לא היו
* * * * * * *
ומביא גאלה…
לצאצאיהם

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All pho­tographs are by Mark Hurvitz unless they are obvi­ously not (or credit oth­er­wise is given).

The pho­tos in the ban­ner at the top (only a shal­low sliver of a much larger photo) are either from our home or our trav­els and are offered for their beauty alone (though a brain-teaser for me: “Where was that?”).

(ac)counting

kindness counts

let me count the (w/d)ays

The period between Pesach and Shavuot was one of seri­ous ten­sion in ancient Israel. The bar­ley har­vest began at Pesach and the wheat har­vest ended near the time of Shavuot. More was at stake dur­ing the period of the count­ing of the Omer than our spir­i­tual growth. The future year’s wealth, […]

#blogexodus : future (tweet #torah at sinai)

aim­ing toward the future

How do I long for Your pres­ence? Let me count the days:

הִנְנִי מוּכָן וּמְזוֻמָּן לְקַיֵּם מִצְוַת עֲשֵׂה שֶׁל סְפִירַת הָעֹמֶר.

Hin’ni muchan um’zuman l’kayem mitz­vat aseh shal s’firat ha’Omer.

I am ready to move from free­dom to respon­si­bil­ity, as I count the Omer days.

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ אֱלֹהֵנוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָׁנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו וְצִוָּנוּ עַל סְפִירַת הָעֹמֶר.

Baruch […]

#blogexodus : questions

the four questions

Our peo­ple has lived all over this earth. Wher­ever we go, we ask ques­tions. These are some of our most famous ques­tions, expressed in a grow­ing vari­ety of languages.

The youngest able recites:

Hebrew

מַה נִּשְׁתַּנָּה הַלַּיְלָה הַזֶּה מִכָּל–הַלֵּילוֹת
שֶׁבְּכָל–הַלֵּילוֹת אָנוּ אוֹכְלִין חָמֵץ וּמַצָּה; הַלַּיְלָה הַזֶּה כֻּלּוֹ מַצָּה
שֶׁבְּכָל–הַלֵּילוֹת אָנוּ אוֹכְלִין שְׁאָר יְרָקוֹת; הַלַּיְלָה הַזֶּה כֻּלּוֹ מָרוֹר
שֶׁבְּכָל–הַלֵּילוֹת אֵין […]

#blogexodus : spring (karpas)

כרפס | karpas | eat the green vegetables

Dip sprigs of pars­ley in salt water and dis­trib­ute them to all present at the Seder table while read­ing the fol­low­ing para­graphs and singing the following songs.

My heart over­flows with joy! I finally see more day­light than dark­ness and a full moon glows tonight. Cel­e­brate with me the flow­er­ing of the […]

#blogexodus : spring (springtime holidays)

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 […]

#blogexodus : plagues (a word search puzzle)

make room in your haggadah/seder for the younger people:

p.p1 {mar­gin: 0.0px 0.0px 2.0px 0.0px; font: 12.0px ‘Book­man Old Style’; min-height: 14.0px}
p.p2 {mar­gin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 12.0px ‘Book­man Old Style’; min-height: 14.0px}
p.p3 {mar­gin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; text-align: cen­ter; font: 19.0px Optima}
[…]

#blogexodus : (the cup of) redemption

the sec­ond cup — the cup of redemption — כוס גאולה

Think of each cup of wine as a toast to the gen­er­a­tions of our peo­ple who com­mit­ted them­selves to the strug­gle for lib­er­a­tion in their own day.

With the sec­ond cup of wine we recall the sec­ond promise, the sec­ond stage, of our redemp­tion, the actual res­cue from […]

#blogexodus : freedom — braiding three strands

a braid of three strands

There are many pos­si­ble modes for under­stand­ing the events retold in the Pesach Haggadah.

Of these, three are braided together so that, if we con­cen­trate exclu­sively on any one of them, we dimin­ish the spe­cial qual­i­ties of the entire story.

By par­tic­i­pat­ing in the sym­bolic actions built into the order of the Seder,
we […]

#blogexodus : slavery — shapes, colors, sounds

shapes, col­ors and sounds of slav­ery
make room in your haggadah/seder for the youngest:

what words, shapes, col­ors and sounds do you imag­ine when you think of slavery?

#blogexodus : cleansing (waters of miriam's well)

the cleans­ing waters of miriam’s well
What fol­lows is the rit­ual I have used at my seder since the mid 1990s.

Before the Seder begins I fill the bot­tom quar­ter of a large pitcher with slices of orange (and often sprigs of mint) then fill the remain­der with ice cubes. Once you can no longer put in any more ice, fill […]