Just as the Shabbat is an oppurtunity for allowing G-d to enter our homes , the Festivals offer an oppurtunity for us to enter into G-d’s house.It is for that reason that the word Simcha -Joy is used to describe the festivals, as opposed to Oneg-Contentment that is used to describe the Shabbat. The Festivals are essentially Moadim or appointed times of meeting the Divine presence . The historical and cultural reasons that surround these days are simply the outer color and fragrance of the main purpose of these days, to see and be seen by G-d’s Presence.


Pesach (Passover) begins on the night of the fifteenth day of the month of Nissan and lasts for eight days. This holiday commemorates the departure of the nation of Israel from Egypt but essentially signifies the beginning of the Jewish people as a people.Though it describes the physical freedom from slavery it essentioally describes the freedom from slavery from the things of Men and the choice to follow G-d.

Passover Seder Tray

The highlight of passover observance is the meal called the Seder ,or the Order.It is a unique and instructive ritual utilizing the text of the Haggada and 15 steps to highlight the move from physical and spiritual slavery to freedom.

The SEDER TRAY contains within it six of these fifteen symbols, wherein each symbol represents the duality between bondage and freedom.

Apart from the three MATZOT ( unleavened bread) which are placed either below the Seder Tray or beside it, the Seder Tray carries the major symbols of the festival.

  1. the Zroah or Shank Bone
  2. the Hard boiled Egg
  3. the Maror or bitter herbs
  4. the Hazeret or grated horseradish
  5. the Haroset a mixture of grated apples, nuts & wine
  6. the leafy vegetable


Hanukkah means “dedication,” and it commemorates the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem after its desecration by the Greek Overlords. The celebration also reaffirms the continuing struggle to educate our people towards the Light of G-d and tradition. The story of the little jug of oil that lasted for eight days and kept the reconsecrated menorah alight until new oil could be made is the basis for the lighting of the menorah . G-d’s light is the focus and the fervent hopeful desire to keep the light alive is the purpose.


The four Hebrew letters on the dreidle — nun, gimmel, hey, and Peh  refers to the miracle of Hanukkah. They stand for the phrase “Nes gadol hayah poh,” ( A great miracle happened here).

It has been customary for children use the dreidels to compete for small prizes, like raisins , candy, or coins.

The letters are the instructions. Sspin the top and follow the instructions per the letter

Nun – Do nothing

Gimmel – Take everything from the pot

Hey -Take half of the pot

Pey – Put half of your stash into the pot.

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