Wednesday, 31 March 2010
The Second Day
It is the Second Day of Unleaven Bread.
I often think about what it must have been like to leave the place of your birth, the place you had lived your whole life as a slave. You really didn't have a childhood, but worked in mudpits, carrying water and dodging the taskmaster's whip. To see your mother and father treated like dogs, yelled at, cursed at, whipped and beaten.
To grow up and marry, then bring children into this same world. To pray that your wife or daughter isn't whipped or worse, raped on this day. To hold onto your faith, the Promise that one day you and your people shall be free.
And now here you are, with your wife and children, free! Heading for the Land your forefather told you G-d had promised. No more whips or chains or tears.
The future laid somewhere along the sandy path you now walk.
My people were once free and then, one day, a child, a woman, a man, were trapped and chained. Put on ships and crossed the blue waters to another land, another world.
The freedom they once knew in North Africa, West Africa, their faith, Hebrew, ripped from them.
Drawing on the old stories they knew by heart from the Torah, G-d would free them. They hung to that hope, their faith. It was their lifeline.
And one day, news came that they were indeed set free, nolonger slaves.
My people. Hebrew slaves. Afrcian slaves.
This week, I celebrate the freedom of my people.