Here’s an unusual thought experiment: Imagine meeting a twenty-year-old man who is suffering from near total amnesia. He explains to you that he knows how to read and write, drive a car and live healthily, but has no idea at all of what he ought to be doing to prepare for successfully living the rest of his life. What are you going to tell him?
Upon some reflection, I think I’d say to him, “There are two really important things that are vital for happy living and neither is intuitive, so I am delighted that you asked me.”
The two are money and marriage. Nothing at all is taught about either one at GIC’s (Government Indoctrination Camps formerly known as public schools.) Not surprisingly, the result is a huge number of twenty-year-old men who have never given a realistic moment’s thought to earning a living. Public education’s indifference to marriage has also resulted in a significantly diminishing percentage of young men marrying. If nobody teaches young males how money works and why marriage is important, how could they possibly know?
Not only is this sad for men, but it is also bad for society. Grown men playing video games in their parents’ basement may be a stereotype, but all the variations that this stereotype represents are terrible for a culture. With fewer and fewer men focused on acquiring financial independence, freedom gets forgotten. And with only a minority of men marrying, the growing numbers of single people and fatherless babies inevitably increases the role of government. Just as inevitably, once the role of government increases so does its power. Once again, the biggest casualty is freedom.
You won’t be shocked to hear that the Biblical festival most dedicated to the idea of freedom heavily emphasizes both money and marriage.
…on the tenth day of this month [Nissan] every man shall take a lamb for each father’s house,
a lamb for each household.
This is the only instance in the Torah where a sacrifice is to be eaten within the father-headed family home. Even among North America’s largely secularized Jewish population, the Passover Seder is perhaps the most widely practiced Jewish observance. Certainly in religious homes, but even in generally non-observant ones, it is still commemorated by holding a family Seder, usually led by the father or grandfather.
Even in these egalitarian times, marriage, for the most part, happens when a man proposes to a woman. Couples who married after the woman proposed marriage are few and far between. Thus, a father-led home means a man became a man and stepped up to the plate. A female-headed household is quite a different matter because it does nothing to socialize a man. Even the boys raised in such households are at high risk in many ways because of the absence of a father.
One of the most reliable indicators of durable cultures through the ages has been monogamous marriage. This alone socializes men who, by starting a family, leading it and supporting it, turn a family into a fortress of freedom. As everyone knows but few say aloud, the overwhelming majority of people living off their fellow citizens through government entitlements are not living in father-headed families.
For this reason, the Scriptural verses about the festival of freedom stress the father-led household, the consequence of a stable marriage. Any citizen who is part of a successful father-led family is extremely unlikely to seek very much interaction with and dependence on centralized government. But marriage is only one part of how to achieve freedom from the tyranny of a centralized Pharaoh, whatever his modern incarnation might be. The other part is financial independence—money.
The special unleavened bread of Passover is called “Bread of poverty,” in Hebrew, “Lehem ONI”.
ע נ י
You shall not eat leavened bread with it [the Passover lamb sacrifice] for seven days you shall eat matzoh, bread of poverty (ONI)…
Some translate the Hebrew word ONI as ‘affliction’ but it is the identical word appearing here:
If that man is poor [ONI] you shall not keep his deposit overnight
You shall not take advantage of a poor [ONI] or destitute hired person…
In other words, the observance of Passover commences with identifying poverty as undesirable; represented by this indigestible bread of poverty called matzoh. However, the Exodus is preceded by the Israelites gathering up all the wealth of Egypt, leaving behind nothing. (Exodus 12:35-36) The Passover festival thus also represents starting a journey from poverty to prosperity which reaches its intended destination seven weeks later at the festival of Pentecost with a special consecration of regular bread—the bread of wealth.
When a nation must be built out of the wreckage of a few hundred years of slavery, the two most important lessons are marriage and money. Without these, the nation will only slide into subservience to the next Pharaoh who happens along. And from that day to this, both marriage and money remain important to the descendants of those Israelites who left Egypt with their matzoh 3,330 years ago from Friday night, March 30th, 2018, the night of the Seder this year.