you’d have to be all good and all knowing to think of yom tovs

As I come across and discover more and more elements within the daily life of a (nearly) observant Jew, I see how there is absolute proof for Hashem’s existence and ‘qualities’. You don’t have to use bible codes or in depth philosophy, the proof is in the practice of being a Jew.

Over Pesach I realised how amazing it is to get an opportunity for 8 days to get lost within the warmth and specialness of your own home. Not only is that warmth and specialness something we create with our own hands when preparing for Pesach, but it is given to us as a gift from Hashem. It is an opportunity to spend real quality time with family, getting to know each other, speaking about beautiful ideas of life, freedom, moving forward, building, and much more. The omer begins here too, and with that, discussions of our inner-most selves and how to become greater than ourselves.

After only one real Pesach where we observed the laws of yom tov it seems surprising that I am in such awe of it. On the other hand, having used my annual leave previously to go on holidays away, I can appreciate the contrast. I’ve learnt to appreciate the value of yom tovim. Going away for a trip away from home offers planing the trip, visiting many new places, cooking using others’ kitchens, etc, etc. I never realised how much work and effort it can really take. The beauty of yom tovim is their focus on the home. The ‘restrictions’ that are also applicable to Shabbos like not driving make the Jewish holidays all the more special. While for outsiders and families of baalei tshuva such restrictions can seem horrendous and overly difficult, it is these restrictions that create unity and real simcha within the family. They are what build the family. Unfortunately this message is so hard to convey without experiencing it for yourself.

It can only be a power much greater than ourselves, a power of pure knowledge and understanding of the human condition that could set up laws and restictions that create such meaning and depth between people. Baruch Hashem.

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