The Hagada states “anyone who speaks at length about the miraculous event of leaving Egypt is praiseworthy.” The following analogy found in the “Yainah Shel Torah Hagada” illustrates this point.
A poor and ignorant man once struck it rich. He decided it was time to put an end to his ignorance, and he hired a personal teacher to educate him with a well-rounded, comprehensive education. He climbed the ladder of intellectual accomplishment, and became a notable scholar. Alas, his wealth did not endure, and he rejoined the ranks of the impoverished. Nevertheless, to the astonishment of his peers, he continued to observe the day he had attained his riches as a day of celebration. “I can understand making a party if you were still rich,” they commented, “but why do you now continue to celebrate this day?” “I’ll explain it to you. Before I became rich, I was an ignorant boor. Now I possess great intellectual wisdom which enlightens every moment of my life. My wisdom is something which remains with me even if my wealth did not. For that reason I continue to celebrate.”
We are asked to view ourselves as if we were liberated from Egypt yet we find ourselves lacking the great “riches” which that generation possessed – G-d’s manifest presence, prophets, overt supernatural divine aid in all situations.
Yet that experience yielded us something we still have. We still have the Torah and its commandments which were gifted to us after the exodus. We’ve inhertited the intellectual, emotional and spiritual fortitude to better ourselves and the world. That is our reason for celebrating.
One who speaks at length about leaving Egypt manifests an appreciation for what we gained as a result of that great experience, even if we are not as “wealthy and influential” as we once were, so to speak. Still we are showing that we attribute value to the experience of leaving Egypt on a deeper level. By focusing on the spiritual enlightenment gained through the exodus and passed on to us throughout the generations, we enter Passover invigorated at the great privilege and ‘wealth’ of being a Jew.
Maot Chitin is an essential way of preparing for Passover as we consider and take the needs of struggling families to afford buying food for Passover. Contributions to this cause can be made out to Rabbi Bergman’s discretionary fund. Please ensure to indicate that it’s for Maot Chitin/Passover.
Educational and Inspiring Pesach Prep Videos
- The shankboneRedemption and a taste of Freedom- Shawshank[bone] Redemption.
- Passover Primer by Mayim Bialik brought to you by Manischevitz- Passover! || Mayim Bialik
- Passover according to Alexander Hamilton- Hamilton Rap: The Passover Story
- A Maccabeat Dayenu- The Maccabeats – Dayenu – Passover
- Did the sea actually split- https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=1592822830765958
- The greatest Passover- the Y-Studs- https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=1931389510235884
- Martha Stewarts Matzah Factory Tour- https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=10155454891485823
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