A Pause in Our Hectic Lives to Meditate on Freedom

A weekend of Good Friday, two Seders, the beginning of another Passover season and Easter Sunday certainly offer moments for each of us to take a deep breath.  Take several. Reflect on all that is good and rewarding in our own lives, on the ways in which we usually manage to cope well with the vagaries and crises in our lives; partly because we know how comparatively lucky we are and partly because we have each other—colleagues, family, friends—to share a shoulder with, to learn from, to help and be helped by.

Those of us at AJWS know from the work we do that, relatively speaking, we are not shackled by the hunger, poor health, lack of education, poverty or actual violence and oppression that plague so many of the world’s people. And those people, over and over again, manage to step forward and help themselves toward an expansion of rights, a greater dose of freedom, the actual pursuit of justice.

I consider it a miracle that I am free to enjoy so much of what others have fought for me to achieve and I am glad that I have a chance to pass some of these benefits on to others.

There is work to do, but not this weekend. Pause. Breathe. Reflect on our freedoms, on the importance of freedom. Think about the difference between freedom from, freedom of and freedom to. I recently reflected on these differences in an essay I wrote for “Ask Big Questions.”

Let us commit to the liberation of ourselves and of others.

Chag Sameach and Happy Easter.