4 Sons & Sons

A discussion of Pesah/Passover generally and the Hagadah specifically. Please comment and contribute!

Thursday, November 10, 2005


An extraordinary idea is brought forth in the Mekhilta Pisha 5 and Shemot Rabbah that the karban (sacrifice) was simply a means to convince the Israelites to perform Berit Milah, a prerequisite for bringing the karban. (Bokser, Baruch M. The Origins of the Seder. Berkeley : University of California Press, 1984.)

The Mekhilta de Rabi Yishmael at one point suggests that as soon as someone converts to Judaism, they should immediately bring the karban Pesach. Although the Mekhilta later rejects this idea, the fact that it was even suggested underscores the importance of the karban Pesach. Both the first Pesach and the Pesach with Joshua at Gilgal contain elements of conversion. At both points the men are circumcised and the Bene Yisrael (Children of Israel) miraculously crosses a body of water which can be seen as representing a mikvah (which is an element of conversion). Yosef Carmel

Aryeh Kaplan points out that the karban Pesach was roasted with its head between its knees, a body position associated with prophecy in the Tanakh. (Meditation and the Bible.)


At 5:13 PM, Blogger Mar Gavriel said...

1. Dudi Goshen gave an interesting shi`ur about this a few years ago. He also talked about how circumcision itself is like a qorbon (sacrifice); Metzitzo Bappe (when the mohel sucks out the blood with his mouth, and in some communities actually swallows the blood) is thus VERY symbolic.

2. It's never "karban". For Ashkenazzim, it's "korbon"; for Sepharadim, it's "korban"; for Mizrahhim (Easterners), its "qorbon" or "qorbân". The first qometz is clearly an O-class vowel, and should be transcribed with an English "O".

At 9:38 PM, Blogger Tam said...

1. The metsitsah controversy reaches every blog apparently. I'm unfamiliar with Dudi Goshen. Who is he?

2. This is embarrassing for 2 reasons. No, 3 reasons. No, 2.

a) I actually know the correct pronunciation. Honestly. I can prove it.
b) I've almost always heard it said "karban". I'm told we also pronounce the word "quarter" oddly.

At 11:20 AM, Blogger Mar Gavriel said...

Dudi Goshen teaches at the Hebrew University beit midrash (AKA beis mezresh).

This is embarrassing for 2 reasons. No, 3 reasons. No, 2.

What's the third, omitted reason.


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