Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Interesting Midrash I read today.

The fifth house [in the heavenly Paradise] is built of onyx and jasper stones, and inlaid stones, and silver and gold, and good pure gold. And around it are rivers of balsam, and before its door flows the River Gihon. And [it has] a canopy of all trees of incense and good scent. And[in it are] beds of gold and silver, and embroidered garments. And there sits Messiah ben David and Elijah and Messiah ben Ephriam. And there is a canopy of incense trees as in the Sanctuary which Moses made in the desert. And all its vessels and pillars are of silver, its covering is gold, its seat is purple. And in it is Messiah ben David who loves Jerusalem. Elijah of blessed memory takes hold of his head, places it in his lap and holds it, and says to him: “Endure the sufferings and the sentence of your Master who makes you suffer because of the sin of Israel.” And thus it is written; He was wounded because of our transgressions, he was crushed because of our iniquities (Isaiah 53:5) until the time when the comes. (“Midrash Konen” BhM 2:29-30)

Sunday, April 4, 2010

The last day of Pesach

Our family has been celebrating the last day of Pesach with a festive meal called Messiah's meal that we invite friends and family to join us in this celebration. Most of our friends know we are Chassidic in traditions and lifestyle. It is our perferred expression of Judaism. So I will attempt to explain with help from my favorite sources to explain this tradition.

The Last day of Pesach is celebrated by eating a special festival Banquet called Mashiach Seudah a custom initiated by the Baal Shem Tov. The connection of the last day of Pesach and Mashiach is explained by the Tzemach Tzedek. "The last day of Pesach is a conclusion of that which began on the first night of Pesach. The first night of Pesach is our festival comemorating our redemption from Egypt by The Holy One Blessed be He. It is the first redemption carried out through Moshe Rabbeinu who was the first redeemer,it was the beginning. The last day of Pesach is our festival comemorating the final redemption to come, When The Holy One Blessed be He, will redeem us from the last exile through the Righteous Mashiach who is the final redeemer. The first day of Pesach is Mashe Rabbeinu's festival, the last day is Mashiach's festival."

May you all have a wonderful and joyous last day of Pesach!