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Showing posts from March, 2010

The Seder's Over ... Not

It’s late and we’re tired. Let’s leave out the songs at the end of the Passover seder. I mean, they don’t even mention Passover, so who cares. Yawn. But wait: Adir Hu (God Is Great), Echad Mi Yodeia (Who Knows 1?) and Chad Gadya (the little goat song) contain the answer to a great secret and mystery! The secret to the mystery is that all these songs, found primarily in Ashkenazi (the tradition of European-based Jews) reflect God’s role as redeemer, our optimistic hope for the future – and most important – understanding Passover not just as a Festival celebrating God’s freeing us from Egyptian slavery but also as the first step in our journey to Mt. Sinai on Shavuot, seven weeks later. Songs can tell all that? Keep reading.The text of Adir Hu (God is Great), built on an alphabetic acrostic, dates to the 6th/7th Century when it was originally chanted during all the Festival services. The melody – simple, repetitive and easily learned – was first notated in Germany in 1644 and has become…