People reenacting the Passover celebrations in Jerusalem .
(photo credit: EYTAN ELHADAZ/ TPS)
Hundreds of people gathered in the old city of Jerusalem on Monday evening to reenact the Temple Passover celebration described in Jewish sources. The spectacle included silver trumpets, the washing of the hands of those believed to be priests and the feasting on lamb meat.
Following the destruction of the second Temple by the Romans in 70 A.D. and the exile of the Jewish people from their land, the Passover celebrations were transformed into a family-based celebration in which festive foods and prayers replaced the lost temple.
However, various rabbis voiced the opinion that there is nothing wrong with a practical reenactment of the celebrations, even if done before Passover and for educational reasons.
During the reign of King Hezekiah, the Passover celebration was overlooked and the bible describes how runners sent by the king to gather the people of Israel to the event were met with some merit by those living away from the capital. Yet the tradition was restored, the Jerusalem Talmud contains oral histories of celebrations held with not a lot of food, which was shared by the great crowd, but with plentiful singing.
Jewish aspirations to explore this aspect of Jewish faith often encounter concerns by Muslims who worry Jewish people might attempt to recreate the historical temple, replacing the existing Muslim place of worship on Temple Mount.
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