I am the Lord Your God,
who brought you out of the land of Egypt,
out of the house of bondage.
1 God is the source of Liberation. Suffering is the result of our enslavement to things that we “need” or “must have”, because it is never enough, it is never ending. Our enslavement to preconceived ideas is also a source of suffering. Now is the time to pray for freedom from all addictions and compulsive behaviors, both material and spiritual.
2 You shall have no other gods beside Me. In ancient times, kings would proclaim themselves gods. In our days, everyone seems to have a definition for God. In ancient times, people worshipped gods in the form of objects, animals, trees, the moon, the sun, stars… In our days, we worship a myriad of gods created for our own profit and what we perceive to be our enjoyment. Now is the time to recognize what we idol-worship, because now is the time when a flow of tremendous Divine energy can liberate us from it.
3 You shall not take the name of the Lord Your God in vain. Let us be aware of the suffering caused by the misuse of God and what we think religion is. We have the power to liberate ourselves from ideologies that demonize the other. Now is the time to pray for guidance in order to recognize, to honor, and to follow the teachings that uphold the freedom and dignity of humanity and nature.
4 Remember the Sabbath, to keep it holy. Our enslavement to work, consumption, and technology prevents us from learning, growing, and from attaining our spiritual potential. Let us use our Shabbat for personal freedom; where creativity is let free, where love can be shared and received, where our souls can soar and holiness is brought down in our lives.
5 Honor your father and your mother. Let us be aware of the challenges of old age, and care not only for our parents, but for the dignity and well-being of all elderly people.
6 You shall not murder. Let us cultivate awareness, respect and gentleness toward all beings.
7 You shall not commit adultery. Let us honor human intimacy, and never degrade it through violence, ignorance, selfishness, or deceit.
8 You shall not steal. Let us be aware of exploitation, injustice, theft, and oppression in the world. Now is the time to pray for freedom for everyone, by working for the fair sharing of resources, and by cultivating generosity in ourselves, the community, and the world.
9 You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. Let us be aware of the suffering caused by Lashon Hara (slander). Now is the time to pray for the strength to speak truthfully, to avoid gossip, to speak with compassion and to refrain from words that will cause harm.
10 You shall not covet what is your neighbor's. Our never ending desire for "things" is a source of suffering. Now is the time to pray for freedom: avoidance of debt, enjoyment of what we have before seeking more and awareness of our true needs and desires.
A Zissen Pesach, a Happy and Meaningful Holiday of Freedom!
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