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March 28, 2013 / conservadox

why seders are hard for me

The seders are over and I’m glad.  While many Jews look forward to the Seder, I always find them about as much fun as Tisha’b’Av (actually less so; I like a day reading history even if I am fasting).  What’s my problem?

I think its a matter of teamwork.  Most holy days are solitary experiences; even if you are with 1000 people they are centered around private prayer, so you can focus on what’s interesting to you.  That comes fairly naturally to me.

At a seder, you listen to other family members recite a text that is often much duller than the siddur (the Haggadah) for a really long time, and if it isn’t a lightning-fast seder you have to listen to their opinions about this text as well.  I constantly have to restrain myself from saying “You, sir/madam are full of rubbish!”  In short, the seder (1)  tests one’s ability to engage in teamwork for hours and hours (2) in the context of a structure I have no control over- a very different skill I think than regular prayer.  That doesn’t mean I can’t be civilized at or learn from a seder; it just means it is something I have to work on.

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