Friday, April 9, 2010

My First Chametz Burning

As I continue to climb the ladder of observance I attempt to add practices and experiences to continue my Jewish exploration and growth. This year I actually made an attempt to fully do the traditional chametz search and then the next day Burn The Chametz.
One problem, by the time I had decided to do this I had already cleared the entire house of any leavened contraband! All I could find were some lowly pretzel sticks from the Purim basket fundraiser from our synagogue. So I diligently placed ten pieces of pretzels around the house in an honest attempt at the Chametz search. My husband and I had two of the three needed items for the search, candle, check, wooden spoon, check....feather? No feather! Well some improvisation was needed...the closest thing I could find to a feather was a swiffer duster! There we are candle, spoon and swiffer trying to beat our dogs to the hidden pretzel sticks. We were following the directions of our rabbi and something I had read on the Chabad site, but I couldn't help but think that this wasn't what Chabad had in mind! the next morning I was on my own. My husband had left the burning ritual to me. I have never witnessed this and didn't have anything to go by except what I had read on line. Once again I looked around the house and gathered my supplies......I had my printed prayers and materials, I had matches and paper and the now ever important pretzels sticks. I even saved the Lulov from sukkot. I was ready!....well except for the rain. Anyone who lives in the Northeast knows about the amount of rain that we have been getting. This was no ordinary rain, this is rain Noah would have related to. But neither rain, nor boiling chicken soup was going to keep me from my appointed task. I found my rain slicker and decided to light the whole event right at my back door and then throw it out the door onto my stoop! As smoke began to fill my kitchen, I feared it would set off one of the smoke detectors in the house. I recited the prayers...then ran like heck to open the windows!

I want to give myself an "A" for effort, but clearly on execution and form...well definitely "needs improvement."


lewyn said...

I learned this year that you can forget the feather and candle and the ten pieces- his view is that it just distracts you from what you really need to be doing, which is a SERIOUS search for chametz you might have missed.

Also, its perfectly OK to flush chametz down the toilet.

IMHO, its hard enough to do actual halachic observance without getting hung up on silly customs that don't rise to the level of binding rules.

Dunking Rachel said...

thanks.... that is helpful!

Dunking Rachael

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