12. Passover – Hasidic Practice I

Since the first century C.E., the most prevalent and popular view for the observance of Passover and the seven days of Unleavened Bread has been Hasidic System B—an interpretation first expressed by the ancient Hasidim.

This practice has the Passover sacrifice offered during during the afternoon of Abib 14 with the Passover meal eaten at the beginning of Abib 15. All leavening is removed from one’s home by noon on Abib 14. Abib 15 begins the 7-day Feast of Unleavened Bread and continues through Abib 21. There is a total of 8 days of Unleavened Bread counted from Abib 14-21.

The questions that must be asked are:

• What is the ancient evidence of this interpretation? Also, just how and on what days did they keep the Festival of Passover and Unleavened Bread?

• When did this Hasidic view of Passover and the seven days of Unleavened Bread first appear?

• What issues created their interpretation and how did they derive their understanding of בערב (be-arab; in the mixing of light and dark [twilight]) and its cognate term בין הערבים (byn ha-arabim; between/among the mixings of light and dark [twilight])?

Continue reading “12. Passover – Hasidic Practice I”

9. Passover – The Dark Period II

One of the most important historical and cultural developments in Judaism during the Hellenic period was the formation of the movement, during the late third century B.C.E., that later became the Hasidim.

From them are derived the Pharisees, Essenes, Zealots, and others, including the later Rabbinists and Talmudists, who are their spiritual descendants.1

The name Hasidim means “pious, devout” ones.2 These early Hasidim must not be confused with the German mystics of the 12th–13th centuries C.E. or with the modern Hasidic movement, founded in 18th century Poland by Israel ben Eliezer.3

Continue reading “9. Passover – The Dark Period II”