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9 April 2009, 10:37

The main Jewish holiday Pesah begins with the sunset

The main Jewish holiday – Pesah begins today with the sunset and it is connected with one of the most important events in the history of Jews – the Exodus from the Egyptian slavery about 3300 years ago. Pesah points to the succession of events owing to which Jews had become one nation. Jews had come to Egypt as one family – the Jacob clan, consisting of 70 people - and left the country as the nation, consisting of 600 thousand. First the clan of Jacob had been welcomed in one of Egyptian provinces but later when the number of Jews started growing special measures were undertaken against them and Egyptians killed all newly born babies because according to the ancient legend the innumerable misfortunes were prophesied to the pharaoh through the fault of one Jewish first-born. Moses was that very first-born who was destined to survive and save his nation. Historians interpret the name “Pesah” as the “passage” or “transition”, the Exodus from Egyptian land. One more interpretation of Pesah means “talking mouth” because the main commandment of the holiday is to talk about the Exodus. Pesah is the spring festival and symbolizes the awakening of nature, renovation of the world and liberation of people. Ritual burning of the leavened bread, which mustn’t be eaten during Pesah, has taken place today in the Jewish Center in Ufa. Pesah will be over on April 16 with morning and memorial prayers in the synagogue and with the final meal in the Jewish center.
Author:Marina Shumilova
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