HOL HAMOED PESSAH: Different Stripes

While the Passover Seder is on our minds and taste buds, allow me to suggest an important lesson likely to be overlooked. Fascinatingly enough, alongside Moses, who is not really mentioned in the Haggada, there is another great biblical personality who plays a major role, but is likewise overlooked. This personality is Joseph, firstborn of Rachel, favored son of Jacob (Israel) and grand vizier of Egypt.

Let us start at the very beginning of the Seder. After we raise the first cup of wine and recite kiddush, we wash our hands without a blessing before eating karpas , a vegetable, usually parsley, and we make the blessing to God “Creator of the fruit of the earth.” The usual explanation is that Greco-Roman meals would generally begin with a vegetable hors d’oeuvre together with a “dip.”

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