LEADER: We shall now answer the four basic questions concerning Passover, which you have asked.

PARTICIPANT: Once we were slaves to Pharaoh in Egypt, and the Lord, in goodness and mercy, brought us forth from that land, with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Had we not been rescued from the hand of the despot, surely we and our children would still be enslaved, deprived of liberty and human dignity.

PARTICIPANT: We, therefore, gather year after year, to retell this ancient story. For, in reality, it is not ancient, but eternal in its message, and its spirit. It proclaims our burning desire to preserve liberty and justice for all.

PARTICIPANT: The first question asked concerns the use of Matzoh. We eat these unleavened cakes to remember that our ancestors, in their haste to leave Egypt, could not wait for bread to rise, and so removed them from the ovens while still flat.

PARTICIPANT:  We partake of the Moror on this night that we might taste of some bitterness, to remind ourselves how bitter is the lot of one caught in the grip of slavery.

PARTICIPANT:  We dip twice in the course of this Service, greens in salt water and Moror in Charoses, once to replace tears with gratefulness, and once to sweeten bitterness and suffering.

PARTICIPANT: The fourth question asks why, on this night, we eat in a reclining position. To recline at mealtimes in ancient days was the sign of a free person. On this night of Passover, we demonstrate our sense of complete freedom by reclining and/or slouching during our repast.

haggadah Section: -- Four Questions