The Four Questions: What Else Needs To Be Asked?

Haggadah Section: -- Four Questions

Mah nishtanah halyla hazeh mikol halaylot? What makes this night different from all [other] nights?

The traditional Four Questions revolve around the action of the seder table:

Sheb’chol haleilot anu och’lin chameitz umatzah; halaylah hazeh kulo matzah.

Sheb’chol haleilot anu och’lin sh’ar y’rakot; halaylah hazeh maror.

Sheb’chol haleilot ein anu matbilin afilu pa’am echat; halaylah hazeh sh’tei f’amim.

Sheb’khol haleilot anu okhlim bein yoshvin uvein m’subin; halailah hazeh kulanu m’subin.

On all nights we need not dip even once, on this night we do so twice? On all nights we eat chametz or matzah, and on this night only matzah? On all nights we eat any kind of vegetables, and on this night maror? On all nights we eat sitting upright or reclining, and on this night we all recline?

These Four Questions are meant to inspire each us to ask more and deeper questions. At our own table, here are modern retakes on the ancient questions:

Why do we eat much on this night and others eat little? Why do we eat the unleavened bread and throw our leavened bread away instead of donating it to the food pantry? Why do we dip our food into sauce and salt and charoset while others may not even have a crumb to dip? Why do we lay back, relax and eat the food that comes to us so easily while others work to buy bread for their family?

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