What is a Laver? It is an ancient biblical bowl used for ceremonial washing. Originally created by Moses, also known as the original Tabernacle, the Laver was part of the delicate religious practice for the Jewish faith.
The Laver was made up of two parts. First, there was a large basin of bronze on which sat four columns that symbolized the four rivers of Eden: Pishon, Gihon, Tigris, and Euphrates. The basin was filled with water and this is where the priests would stand to wash during their sacred purification rituals.
The second part was a connecting pair of water-filled basins which allowed the flow of water from the higher Laver to the lower Laver. This flow of water from the top to the bottom was symbolical of purifying one's self to the presence of God.
The primary function of the Laver was of spiritual cleansing and was a deeper level of consecration for the priests. At the start of each day, the Priests would come to the Laver and wash their hands and feet as a sign of their dedication to the Lord, and to cleanse themselves of any impurity or sin before they entered the Holy Place of the Tabernacle.
Not only did it serve a religious purpose, the Laver was also a practical aspect in some ways. The priests would bathe in the Laver to cleanse their skin in order to avoid becoming unclean from any contact with something unclean such as a dead body. This was a legal requirement of their post as priests.
The Biblical references of the Laver are mentioned multiple times in the bible. Most notably in Exodus 30:18–21, the passage reads, “You shall make a laver of bronze, with its base of bronze, for washing. You shall put it between the tent of meeting and the altar, and you shall put water in it, with which Aaron and his sons shall wash their hands and their feet; when they go into the tent of meeting, and when they come near the altar, they shall wash, so that they may not die.”
The Laver was held in seeming high esteem by God. When Moses finished constructing the Tabernacle, the Lord spoke these words to Moses about the completion of the Laver:
"And thou shalt anoint it, and sanctify it; that it may be most holy: whatsoever toucheth the laver shall be holy" (Exodus 30:29).
From this we can understand that the Laver was held to a higher standard than even the sacrifice of animals and other burnt offerings - it was a means of purification and as such demanded holiness.
Beyond its practical usage, the Laver has gone on to become symbolic in many Christian religions of a ritual of spiritual cleansing, representing the forgivness of sin and the drawing closer to God. For members of the Orthodox Christian faith, the Laver is filled three times with holy water and blessed thrice with words such as, “Hallowed be Thy name".
In some denominations of the Catholic faith, the washing of the feet on Maundy Thursday (the last Thursday of Lent) is done in a Laver. The priest washes the feet of twelve church members of both genders, this representing Jesus washing the feet of the twelve disciples.
The Laver is an ancient practice used as a symbol of purity and dedication to the Lord. It remains a vital part of Jewish and Christian rituals, reminding us of just how powerful the act of cleansing can be on so many levels.
When you think of a laver, you likely envision a dinner plate of crunchy seaweed, topped with a sprinkling of condiments. However, what you may not know is the intricate process of how this seaweed-like vegetable makes its way from the ocean to your dinner plate. This blog post aims to take an in-depth look at the creation and journey of a laver, and the numerous human and nonhuman interrelations involved in the process.
The first stage of creating a laver is its birth in the ocean. A mature seaweed plant, known as a sporophyte, will begin to release spores on the ocean surface. The spores are typically light in weight and equipped with an array of specialized structures. From the specialized, specialized structures propel them downward into the substrate, where they are able to attach and eventually germinate. From this point, a filamentous structure, known as the gametophyte, rapidly grows and begins sexual reproduction. This is accomplished through the development of tiny organs, known as gametangia, which house both sperm and egg cells. In order for fertilization to occur, the gametes must meet in their environment, which is typically accomplished by an event known as “gamete release”. During gamete release, the gametangia will rupture, releasing the haploid sperm and eggs into the water where they are able to form a zygote when they meet. The zygote eventually develops into a multicellular structure, which matures into a young sporophyte. This is the earliest stage of a seaweed plant, and is officially considered to be the baby laver beginning its journey towards the dinner plate.
Once the baby laver is mature enough to survive independent of its gametophytic parents, it will seek out a suitable home on the ocean floor. The Baby Laver will attach itself to the substrate via a small disc-like attachment organelle, known as a hapteron. Once anchored to the substrate, the young sporophyte begins to differentiate its cells, eventually forming a distinct shape and becoming the adult laver we recognize today. The laver may continuously form lateral branches, allowing it to build a small community with its neighbors. As the laver ages, its color may change based on species, but the general color range is typically red, brown, or yellow-brown.
Now that the laver is an adult, it needs go through a process so that it may eventually end up on a dinner plate. This process is called seaweed cultivation. Seaweed cultivation involves the human harvesting of sustained, wild stocks of seaweed. In modern times, seaweed cultivation is mostly industrial, meaning large companies and local government may own or harvest large tracts of seaweed nearby to be used in agricultural production. In order to understand the process of seaweed cultivation, it’s important to understand the concepts of an aquaculture. Aquaculture is when people cultivate aquatic organisms for human consumption, including seaweed. Seaweed cultivation may utilize several processes, such as fallowing, sowing, and pond maintenance.
The first step for any seaweed cultivation is dubbed fallowing. Fallowing is when a farmer pre-treats the environment for the seaweed cultivation. The process involves removing anything from the sea surface that may interfere with the growth of the lavers, such as other seaweed competition or marine life. In addition, the farmer may add or remove various essential (or non-essential) elements to the ocean surface, depending on the species of seaweed. The farmer may also introduce new technology to the environment, such as artificial structures to which the lavers may anchor to the substrate.
Once the environment is pre-treated, the farmer may now sow new seeds into the ocean in the form of small tablets. These tablets are made up of clumps of seaweed spores, and upon contact with the substrate, will germinate into the adult lavers. The farmer also may install large aquaculture cages near the site of seeding. These cages will allow for the seaweed to grow in any type of conditions, without the need for any specific environment control. This ensures the seaweed will grow and mature into a mature, edible seaweed leaf.
The seaweed can remain in the aquaculture cages anywhere from a few weeks to a few months, depending on the species of seaweed and the desired maturity level. Once the seaweed is deemed mature, the farmer collects their harvest of lavers and carefully removes them from the cages and oceans. The lavers are then immediately brought to shore, typically in large sacks of seawater, to begin the journey to the dinner table.
Once landed, the lavers will undergo a detailed inspection to ensure they are edible and of good quality. If approved, the lavers are brought to a processing factory where they will be packaged, cleaned, and sterilized. This is done by exposing the lavers to various levels of heat or pressure to remove any bacteria. Then, any unwanted material such as sand and pebbles are removed, and the lavers are graded according to size and quality. The lavers may also be dried, salted and seasoned depending on the desired taste and buyer.
Now that the lavers are properly prepared for sale, they are shipped off to restaurants, grocery stores and other food vendors where they await sale. Depending on the geographical location, the lavers may be packaged in plastic containers, vacuum sealed bags, or tin cans. The lavers may be sold as is, or can be combined with other ingredients to create new dishes, such as laver rice or sushi.
Finally, the laver ends its journey on the dinner plate. Once the laver is cooked and served, the customer will be able to enjoy the end product of its long and intricate journey. The eater will be not only satisfying their hunger, but also connecting to nature and cultures that span across the earth.
In conclusion, the process of creating and traveling a laver is incredibly intricate, involving numerous human and nonhuman interrelations. The round-trip journey of the laver, starts in the ocean, going through multiple stages of cultivation, land-based processing, and finally gracing a dinner plate. All of the steps discussed allow the laver to make its way to the mouths and bellies of the hungry, connecting them to the oceans and cycles of nature.
|Vitamin A||0.26 mg|
|Vitamin E||0.001 grams|
|Vitamin K||0.004 mg|
|Vitamin C||0.039 grams|
|Vitamin B1||0.1 mg|
|Vitamin B2||0.45 mg|
|Vitamin B3||0.00147 grams|
|Vitamin B4||0.0104 grams|
|Vitamin B5||0.52 mg|
|Vitamin B6||0.16 mg|
|Vitamin B9||0.146 mg|
Daily Value 1.3 g
Daily Value 0.018 g
Daily Value 0.4 g
Daily Value 1.25 g
Daily Value 4.7 g
Daily Value 2.3 g
Daily Value 0.011 g
Daily Value 0.9 mg
Daily Value 0.0023 g
Daily Value 0.055 mg
|Aspartic Acid||0.567 grams|
|Glutamic Acid||0.547 grams|
|Total Sugars||0.5 grams||
|Palmitic acid (16:0)||0.05 grams||
|Total Saturated fatty acids:||0.05 g|
|Oleic acid (18:1)||0.01 grams||
|Palmitoleic acid (16:1)||0.01 grams||
|Gadoleic acid (20:1)||0.01 grams||
|Total Monounsaturated fatty acids:||0.03 g|
|Omega-3 Timnodonic acid (20:5)||0.08 grams||
|Total Polyunsaturated fatty acids:||0.08 g|