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Monday, April 18, 2005

Happy Passover

I am going to take a point of personal privilege. I played hookey this weekend and did not blog. That's because the weather was too pretty. I know it's an absolutely superficial reason and one that a dedicated and passionate blogger should be ashamed of. After all, with all that's wrong with this world, all that needs to be fixed, or at least pointed out and written about, how could one of us take off just because it was a nice day outside?

Ah but what a day. The delicately colored pink petals hung heavily from the tulip magnolia trees, like ripe fruit, ready to fall to the ground. The faintly colored pink and white cherry blossoms were gloriously in bloom and the white flowers spread over the dogwood trees like a lacey shawl. The air was scented with the perfume of all the blooming fauna.

The sun warmed the air but a cool breeze kept it from being uncomfortable. It was fine weather. Soon enough, Virginia and Washington, DC will be a thick suspension of humidity and pollution sweltering in 90 degree plus heat. That will be time enough to bolt from the outdoors and take refuge in an air conditioned room, passing my days at the computer, imagining that my words can right the wrongs of the world. My blood will boil, my temperature will soar as high as the temperature outdoors and once again I'll write about the economic travesty that the Bush Administration commits and the travail that the religious right is trying to cause.

But this past weekend was just too pretty, too perfect to stay indoors. And more importantly, it was also too fine to waste on being angry.

I'm getting ready to head out to Florida to visit my ninety year old parents for Passover. They remain faithful and devoutly Jewish.

This is a perfect time for a holiday that celebrates liberation from slavery. The rabbis of the Talmudic period counseled that each person should view the Passover celebration as their personal liberation from Egypt.

What is your personal Egypt (in the metaphorical sense - I don't want to insult actual modern-day Egyptians who are not responsible for the ancient slavery of the Hebrews under the Pharohs)? From what must you come out of bondage?

At a beautiful time of the year that abounds with signs of rebirth and new dawnings, it's not a bad question to ask yourself. What habit of mind, what bad attitude, what situation binds you and would casting it off bring you a renewal?

Happy Passover. May you find peace and freedom.

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