Saturday, May 5, 2012

Chag HaPesach

"Matzot shall be eaten in a holy place" (Vayikra 6:9)

It is written in the Torah Portion of Tzav, "Matzot shall be eaten in a holy place" (Vayikra 6:9)  This is a hint to the Matzot that are eaten on the night of Passover, that they should be in a holy place.  That is to say, that one should sanctify his mouth, for that is the place of eating the Matzot.  This is also hinted at by the word "Pharoah", which in Hebrew has the same letters as Peh-Ra (an evil mouth), and the rectification for this is Pesach, which in Hebrew is similar to the Hebrew words Peh-Sach (a mouth which speaks).  One should speak only words which are good and holy, for everyone who increases speaking about them (i.e., the miracles of Passover) is praiseworthy.  And the opposite is also the case; someone who doesn't speak good words,  G-d forbid, is not praiseworthy.

Four Cups of Wine (Pesach Haggadah)

It is told in the Gemara about Rabbi Yehuda bar Ila'i, that he would have a headache from drinking the four cups of wine on the night of the Seder, from Passover until Shavuot; and this was something to wonder at, that every time he would have a headache, at exactly the same season from Passover until Shavuot.  They explained this from a Mussar (ethical) point of view, that the meaning of this is that the influence of the night of the Seder needs to extend until Shavuout because that is its end-point and purpose, for the main reason that the children of Israel went out from Egypt was so that afterwards they would receive the Torah (from Rabbi Yehuda Tzadka).

"How many levels of goodness TO the Omnipresent  are upon us". (Pesach Haggadah)

 It should have been written, "FROM the Omnipresent are upon us", and not "TO the Omnipresent", as if the intention was that He received a benefit.  And the explanation is, that everything that the Holy One Blessed Be He does for the people of Israel, He is also doing it for Himself, and if there is something which is good for the children of Israel, it is also good for Him.  This is similar to what we find by Rabbi Yishmael who entered within (the Sanctuary of the Temple) and the Holy One Blessed Be He requested "Bless me", and Rabbi Yishmael said to Him, "May Your Mercy overcome Your anger at us".  Wasn't that a blessing to Israel and not to the Holy One Blessed Be He?  However, the explanation is that a blessing to Israel is in its very essence a blessing to the Holy One Blessed Be He.

Chametz (Pesach Haggadah)

Why are we stringent on Pesach about the slightest bit (of Chametz)?  To hint that if the congregation of Israel had remained in Egypt the slightest bit more time, they would have entered the 50th gate of impurity.

Chametz (Pesach Haggadah)

Everyone who is careful about avoiding the slightest bit of Chametz on Pesach is promised that he won't sin all year.  (Ba'er Heitev Siman 447)

"In the beginning our forefathers were idol worshipers".  (Pesach Haggadah) 

Why does the Hagaddah begin with a disgrace and end with praise?  To show us that even if a person is found at the lowest level, G-d forbid, he is still able to elevate himself to high levels.

Two Torah scrolls are taken out: 1. Moshchu V'Kchu (from the Torah Portion of "Bo") 2. for the Maftir, "Uv'Chodesh  HaRishon (from the Torah Portion of "Pinchas")

The Haftorah is "B'ait Hahi" (Yehoshua 5)

L'ilui Neshamat HaGaon HaTzaddik R' Gershon Avigdor Ben R' Chaim ztz"l
Shabbat Shalom and Chag Sameach!
In Nissan we were redeemed, and in Nissan we are to be redeemed in the future. (Rosh Hashanah 11a)

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