The 4th of July is America's birthday. That's a big deal. This brief ceremony will help you bring meaning back into this holiday. It's easy and fun. Celebrate liberty!
We Americans need a ritual to remind ourselves of our national origins and our national purpose. That is why Prager University has created the Fourth of July Declaration Ceremony, which draws its inspiration from one of the most enduring rituals in the world: the Jewish Passover Seder. ("Seder" means "order" in Hebrew).
For thousands of years, the Passover Seder has helped Jews around the world remember that they are descendants of an enslaved people who were liberated by the mighty hand of God. The Founders of the United States (including George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and others) were all well-versed in the Bible and knew the story of the Israelite's exodus from Egypt. They viewed their break from England as a new exodus; so much so that Franklin and Jefferson wanted the seal of the newly-formed United States to depict the Israelites escaping across the Red Sea.
Even though that design was not chosen, the original historical inspiration still remains. Like the Passover seder, the Fourth of July Declaration Ceremony can be a powerful ritual that helps us transmit our love for this country to our children and grandchildren.
In keeping with our philosophy at Prager University that profound concepts can be taught in five minutes or less, we have kept the Declaration Ceremony brief. In our experience, adults find it meaningful and children find it fascinating.
If you follow our simple guide, the Fourth of July will be more than just another barbecue of fireworks display. It will become the kind of day it was meant to be: a celebration of the birth of our exceptional country, and a way of showing gratitude for the gift of liberty that has been bestowed upon us all.
You can always add more to your 4th of July Declaration, but we give you the basics here.
Doing a little will mean a lot - to you, to your family and friends, and to the nation.Happy Independence Day!