Friday, April 22, 2011

A report on Samaritan Passover

A REPORT ON SAMARITAN PASSOVER, which began the day before Jewish Passover this year:
Photo-op on Mount Gerizim

How an ancient Samaritan ritual turned into a tourist free-for-all.

By Chaim Levinson (Haaretz)

In this animal-conscious era where people are willing to eat steak so long as they don't have to hear about the cow, it seems unlikely that thousands of Israelis would be willing to wait hours to see slaughtered lambs, hanging and smelling of burned oil. But this Passover ritual, practiced by Samaritans, has become a magnet. This is no mere killing of animals, but an anthropological phenomenon - a holy ritual that takes place not too far from home, a throwback to ancient days. Thousands of Israelis, and foreign tourists, are apparently prepared to push through crowds each year to photograph a white-clothed man slitting the throat of a lamb.

More on the Samaritan Passover here.