Let your ego go!

Arié Moyal
10 min readApr 8, 2020

The significance of celebrating Passover during this pandemic

Photo by Ricardo Gomez Angel on Unsplash

I usually love Passover because, despite all of its moving parts and fastidiousness about deep cleaning and minding what we eat, it is a time that I like to call “ego detox”. Consider the difference between matzah and bread. Aside from the leavening agent which fills it with pockets of air, the recipe for both is pretty much the same. However, on Passover, we only eat matzah and are very strict about eliminating bread or things that rise (chametz) or can be confused for flour. In fact, one of the Four Questions that we train the youngest among us to ask is “Why is it that on every other night we eat chametz AND matzah but tonight we only eat matzah? My answer to this question is simple: That leavening agent is the equivalent to the ego. It’s what we use to puff ourselves up and make ourselves look bigger than we are so that others will “respect” us more — but it lacks authenticity. Matza, on the other hand, which lacks a leavening agent, is referred to as “lechem oni” or poor man’s bread. I would argue that it is not poor in a negative sense but rather in one that, like most Jewish practices and rituals, is meant to help us reconnect with our true selves and to recognise, with humility, the outside help we all need by design. It’s time to change up the way we do things and re-evaluate how we lead our lives. And boy, does this Passover come at a time where we are being forced to change up how we do virtually everything! My hope is that we can seize this unique moment in history. Rather than focus on what has been forbidden to us during this time, we can reconnect with our true selves, shed some of the unhealthy ego-driven behaviour we have come to see as desirable, or even just normal. The story of Passover recounts how the Israelites were freed from slavery in Egypt which in Hebrew is called Mitzrayim. The etymology of Mitzrayim refers to a narrow place and our opportunity in reliving the exodus is to free ourselves from our own personal Mitzrayim. Given that the Israelites relocated to Egypt to reunite with Joseph, who had been sold into slavery by his brothers only to rise from the rank of servant to that of viceroy, it follows that Mitzrayim symbolises the self-imposed limitations we have each placed upon ourselves for the sake of our egos and even in pursuit of what we believe to be our best interests. Thus, the opportunity is…

--

--

Arié Moyal

#landback #freepalestine Founder of HugTrain / Speaker, trainer, thinker/ Autistic & disabled/ Jewish, racialised, Amazigh, autiqueer