Laws and Customs
We read in the Haggadah: “In every generation a man is obliged to see himself as having come out of Egypt.” Likewise, in every generation, people are obliged to see themselves as having been present at the Revelation at Sinai.
In order to become a free people, we needed to undergo the experience of slavery – 'one can only appreciate light by contrast with darkness'. Leaving slavery enabled us to become full human beings, and we have entered the service of G-d.
The period of 50 days between Pesach and Shavuot addressed here has been and will be a period of special importance to the People of Israel. These are days of looking forward to receiving the Torah, and the realisation of the main purpose for which we were liberated from Egypt. Even today, some 3,300 years after the Exodus, we feel their significance. The days of preparation for the receiving of the Torah should be fresh in our eyes each year.
[Yom Haatzma’ut (Israeli Independence Day) and Jerusalem Liberation Day are dealt with in a separate series.]
Counting the Omer
Sorrow and mourning in this period
The mitzva of the Omer
Pesach Sheni - the 'Second Pesach'
The laws of 'new season's produce'
The Revelation at Sinai – the Giving of the Torah