Wednesday, April 04, 2007

The Jewish Santa Claus?

Every year at the seder we pour an extra cup of wine, called the "cup for Eliyahu". and as the story goes, Eliyahu comes around to everyone's seder and drinks from the cup. I would say that the majority of kids at a seder are told some sort of fable about Eliyahu coming around to them. Being the kind of person who is against all things not explained (unless clearly written in the Torah, or has a known connection to sinai, [i.e. how to wear Tefillin]) I never really liked the story that Eliyahu goes to every house; it's a logistical nightmare! Here is my explanation. Every argument in the gemara that no answer is found, they use the word "taiku". In modern hebrew that means a tie, and I dont know if it has a meaning in Aramaic, but we always learned it as an acronym that meant "Eliyahu will come and answer all our questions". And that is why we have the "cup of Eliyahu". We dont know if we're supposed to drink four cups or five cups, and we have no way of knowing; it's a taiku. So we fill up the fifth cup as a symbolic way of saying that if the Moshiach comes tonight, with Eliyahu at his side, and tells us we need to drink five cups, we have it ready.

And may he come soon and tell us that yes, we DO need to drink five cups!

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

i like that. but shouldnt that mean that everyone at the seder should have a fifth cup ready?

1:20 AM  
Blogger stillruleall said...

it's purely symbolic. If he would come, we could all just pour ourselves the fifth cup.

5:06 PM  

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