We have told the story. Responses reflecting diversity among us have been shared. We are not alone in our thoughts and feelings.The story has softened our hearts, has penetrated the hardness of our fears and artificial defenses and pierced open the stoniness of our suspicion and distrust.
Our children have asked the questions and we have tried to answer them, honestly and openly.Children recognize insincerity instantaneously; we dare not deceive them with disconnected intellectualization or abstract pontification. We thus extend the depth of our feeling and memory with them, inviting them to step into our stories in the hope that they will be lovingly nurtured through our personal and intimate revelations of who we were and who we try to be. After all, the story is told around a family table, its listeners are loved ones, its conveyers are sources of care and concern. We let go of barriers of distance and detachment, embracing one another's words and gestures hungrily and gratefully.
Now we feel more trusting, sharing strengthens bonds of togetherness -it is time for "rachtzah"-fuller trusting, tangibly executed by the washing of the hands with the pronouncement of a blessing, expressing our trust in and gratitude to, God.
The water refreshes and cleanses our spirit of the dross of feeling apart, isolated, even alone; we are family again, our ties reinforced by a common story of reaching for redemption.
We ready ourselves for the meal, for the partaking in a scrumptiously sacred meal; but first a reminder of the paradoxes of life and how to embrace them with the the wisdom of the heart.
Matzah-unleavened bread-the substance of the next posting, the next step in the spiritual process of Seder.