Liberating Your Passover Seder

An Anthology Beyond The Freedom Seder

by Rabbi Arthur Ocean Waskow and Rabbi Phyllis Ocean Berman, editors

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About this book

In 1969, Arthur Waskow created the Freedom Seder to address America’s racial issues a year after the assassination of Martin Luther King. It began a revolution in American Judaism, using the ancient Passover Seder ritual to tell a contemporary story of liberation and combining the ancient and the timely in a way that lay the path for subsequent repurposing of the Seder for other messages.

Liberating Your Passover Seder tells the story of those innovations while laying the groundwork for future religious creativity.

Liberating Your Passover Seder tells the history of the Freedom Seder and includes material marking the Freedom Seder’s 40th anniversary celebration in 2019.

Liberating Your Passover Seder retells the origin of subsequent new haggadahs, including those focusing on Jewish-Palestinian reconciliation, environmental concerns, feminist and LGBT struggles, and the Covid-19 pandemic of 2020.

Liberating Your Passover Seder includes Susannah Heschel’s explanation of why she famously added an orange to the Seder plate.

But more than looking back, Liberating Your Passover Seder is a challenge for all of us to heed Arthur Waskow’s renewed call to “Free your seder!”


In Every Generation: Looking Forward
Rabbi Arthur Ocean Waskow and Rabbi Phyllis Ocean Berman

Why I Wrote the Freedom Seder and
Why It’s Still Necessary 50 Years After Dr. King’s Assassination
Rabbi Arthur Waskow

Father Dan Berrigan, Cornell University, and the Freedom Seder
Rabbi Arthur Waskow

The Influence of the Freedom Seder, 44 Years Later
Rabbi David Saperstein

The Shalom Seders: Three Progressive Visions
Reena Bernards

A Museum of History Creates the Future:
The Contemporary Resonance of Ancient Ritual
Emily August

The Seder Sisters
Letty Cottin Pogrebin

The Wellspring: A Public Women’s Seder
Rabbi Tamar Cohen

Women: Enslaved or Liberated by the Seder?
Rabbi Shalom Schachter

Mah Nishtanah? Pesach Liberation and LGBTQ Coming Out
Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum

The Song of Songs Seder: A Night of Sacred Sexuality
Rabbi Robert dos Santos Teixeira, LCSW

Celebrating Queer Sexuality: Song of Songs Aslant
Susala Kay

The Seder of the Children of Abraham
Rabbi Brian Walt, Rabbi Mordechai Liebling and Catherine Essoyan

A Freedom Seder in Hebron
A. Daniel Roth

Campus Freedom Seders: Freedom For Who, Exactly?
Jess Schwalb

Earthy Teachings of Pesach
Rabbi Arthur Waskow & Rabbi Jeff Sultar

My People Were Refugees: The Writing of the HIAS Haggadah
Rabbi Rachel Grant Meyer

Discovering the Ecological Imperative of Passover
The Backstory of The Promise of the Land: A Passover Haggadah
Ellen Bernstein

Kos Miryam Ritual of 1987 and Kos Miryam for Pesach
Stephanie Loo, M.Ed. and Rabbinic Pastor Matia Rania Angelou

Why an Orange?
Susannah Heschel

The Freedom Plate on the Seder Table
Martha Hausman

Four New Questions for the Passover Seder
Rabbi Arthur Waskow

“Making our Days Radically New as They Were 50 Years Ago”
Rabbi Phyllis Berman and Vivienne Hawkins

The Mosque and the Seder
Imam Abdul-Halim Hassan

Remember the Poor
Rev. Dr. Liz Theoharis

“Only Prophets Can Stand Up Now…”
Reverend William Barber II

A Seder for Healthcare Workers During a Plague
Denise L. Davis, MD

Crossing the Red Sea to Create the Post-COVID World
Seventh night Seder On-Line April 14, 5780/2020
Rabbi Shawn Israel Zevit

Notes Toward Freeing the Seder
Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, Ph.D.

Passover & Kabbalah:
Freedom from Alien Authority, Liberty Toward Higher Purpose
Joel Hecker with Jeffrey Dekro

Liberating the Future: Passover and Beyond
Rabbi Arthur Ocean Waskow