As you might know, tonight marks the beginning of the eight day Jewish holiday of Passover. Consider the meaning of freedom:
Traditionally, Jewish people remember the Exodus from Egypt during Passover. We are supposed to feel as if we ourselves were actually redeemed by God from Egyptian slavery. As such, we want to remember those individuals who continue to be enslaved, and highly disadvantaged, today. So, what does it mean to be free? (Teachers might consider asking their students this question.) Jewish tradition stresses the fact that freedom does not mean getting to do whatever you want. When people do whatever they want chaos ensues. Behavioral rules are important because they ensure civilized living. (Consider challenging students to imagine what the world would be like if people did whatever they want whenever they want.) According to Jewish tradition, the redeemed Hebrews arrived at Mt. Sinai exactly seven weeks after they were redeemed from Egypt. During this seven weeks they had the opportunity to experience the chaos of live without rules. They recognized that they needed rules. So, the question is, what does freedom mean? (I'd suggest that it means having the opportunity to reflectively consider the way that you want to live your life within the rules of society and pursuing your dreams and ambitions.) What do you think it means?