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Source : A Different Night; Haggadah for the American Family, 1966; #globalbeitmidrash and #globalteenagershaggadah


Happy Passover and welcome to our Seder!

We are about to begin our Seder. Its primary purpose is to retell the ancient story of Israel's redemption from bondage in Egypt and to recall the miraculous events which led to the exodus from an ancient land of slavery.  The Bible commands, "And thou shalt tell thy son in that day, saying: It is because of that which the Lord did for me when I came forth out of Egypt." By this the Bible means that young and old should gather on the eve of Passover, in order to relate this chapter of our people's history.

Passover has a message for the conscience and the heart. It commenorates the deliverance of our people from the degradation of slavery and cruel and inhuman tyranny. Although it is the Pharoah of old who is the tyrant of the Haggadah, it is not he alone of whom we speak tonight. We speak this evening of other tyrants and other tyrannies as well.

Although we are no longer enslaved in Egypt, our experience shaped and should always shape our interactions with people around the world. We as a people must have "the outstretched hand" that G-d had with our ancestors. When people seek refuge, let their wish be fulfilled. That is how we can thank G-d for our freedom, more than anything.

We welcome our family members and friends from all backgrounds to reflect with us on the meaning of freedom in all our lives and histories. We will consider the blessings in our lives, pledge to work harder at freeing those who still suffer, and begin to cast off the things in our own lives that oppress us.


We speak of the tyranny of poverty and of the tyranny of privation,

Of the tyranny of wealth and the tyranny of war,

Of the tyranny of power and the tyranny of despair,

Of the tyranny of disease and the tyranny of time,

Of the tyranny of ignorance and the tyranny of color.


Iraqi Jews tell the tale that in one country the king was always chosen in a special way. When the old king died, a bird called the “bird of good fortune” would be released. On whomsoever's head it landed, the people would place the crown making him their next ruler.

Once the bird of good fortune landed on the head of a slave. That slave had been a simple musician who entertained at the master’s parties. His costume consisted of a feathered cap and a belt made of the hooves of sheep.
When the slave became king, he moved into the palace and wore royal robes. However, he ordered that a shack (a kind of sukkah) be constructed next to the palace and that his old hat, belt and drum be stored there along with a giant mirror.

The new king was known for his kindness and love for all his people – rich and poor, free and slave. Often he would disappear into his little shack. Once he left its door open and the cabinet ministers saw him don his feathered hat, put on his old belt and dance and drum before the mirror. They found this very strange and asked the king: “After all, you are a king! You must maintain your dignity!”

The king replied:
“Once I was a slave and now I’ve become a king. From time to time I want to remind myself that I was once a slave lest I grow arrogant and treat with disdain my people and you, my ministers.”

Source : Elie Weisel
Ani Maamin


The following text is excerpted from "Ani Maamin," a poem by Nobel Laureate Elie Weisel. At the age of 15, Weisel and his family were sent to Auschwitz, where his Mother and younger sister were among the more than 1 million Jews murdered there. Wessel is pictured above, the second row of bunks, 7th from the left.

Ani Maaim by Elie Weisel

A camp.

An inmate.

A creature without a name.

A man without a destiny.

It is night, the first night of Passover.

The camp is asleep,

He alone is awake.

He talks to himself


I hear his words,

I capture his silence.

To himself, to me,

He is saying:

I have not partaken of Matzot,

Nor of maror.

I have not emptied the four cups,

Symbols of the four deliverances.

I did not invite The hungry To share my repast --

Or even my hunger.

No longer have I a son

To ask me

The Four questions --

No longer have I the strength

To answer. . . .

Still, I recite the Haggadah

As though I believe in it.

And I await the prophet Elijah,

As I did long ago.

I open my heart to him

And say. . .

Empty the cup

That bears your name.  

Come to us,

Come to us on this Passover night:  

We are in Egypt

And we are the ones To suffer God's plagues.  

Come, friend of the poor,

Defender of the oppressed,


I shall wait for you.  

And even if you disappoint me I shall go on waiting,

Ani Maamin.  

Source : J. Potts, Michael Varon,


When a Seder falls on Saturday night, the end of Shabbat, we say Havdalah before lighting the festival candles. Havdallah is a ceremony that marks the separation between Shabbat and the beginning of the week. Tonight, we mark the separation between the end of Shabbat and another day of Pesach, ben kodesh l'kodesh. The havdalah candle is comprised of many wicks braided to come together to create a large, single flame - much larger, brighter and warmer than if there were only a singlewick. Some questions we can consider are:

  • Why make such a big deal about the separate wicks if they are a single flame?
  • Which is more important - the separate wicks or the single flame? How does this add meaning to our Passover seder tonight?

The Blessing over Wine

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ מֶֽלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, בּוֹרֵא פְּרִי הַגָּֽפֶן.

Baruch atah, Adonai, Elohaynu melech ha’olam, boray pri hagafen.

Blessed are You, God, our Lord, King of the universe, Creator of the fruit of the vine.

The Blessing over Spices

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ מֶֽלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, בּוֹרֵא מִינֵי בְשָׂמִים.

Baruch atah, Adonai, Elohaynu melech ha’olam, boray minay vesamim.

Blessed are You, God, our Lord, King of the universe, Creator of the different spices.

The Blessing over the Candle

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ מֶֽלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, בּוֹרֵא מְאוֹרֵי הָאֵשׁ.

Baruch atah, Adonai, Elohaynu melech ha’olam, boray me’oray ha’aysh.

Blessed are You, God, our Lord, King of the universe, Creator of the fire’s lights.

The Blessing over Havdalah

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, אֱלֹהֵֽינוּ מֶֽלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, הַמַּבְדִיל בֵּין קֹֽדֶשׁ לְחוֹל, בֵּין אוֹר לְחֹֽשֶׁךְ, בֵּין יִשְׂרָאֵל לָעַמִּים, בֵּין יוֹם הַשְּׁבִיעִי לְשֵֽׁשֶׁת יְמֵי הַמַּעֲשֶׂה. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, הַמַּבְדִיל בֵּין קֹֽדֶשׁ לְחוֹל.

Baruch atah, Adonai, Elohaynu melech ha’olam, hamavdilbayn kodesh lechol bayn or lechoshech bayn Yisrael la’amim bayn yom hashevi’i leshayshet yemay hama’aseh.Baruch atah, Adonai, hamavdil bayn kodesh lechol.

Blessed are You, God, our Lord, King of the universe, who separates between the holy and the profane; between the light and dark; between Israel and the other nations; between the seventh day and the six days of the week. Blessed are You, God, who separates between the holy and the profane.

Source : A Night of Questions, In Search of Freedom, A Growing Haggadah

Passover holiday candles are lit traditionally by the the eldest woman of the house no later than 18 minutes before sundown. If the Seder falls on a Saturday night, candles are lit after sunset and after Havdallah has been celebrated since we cannot kindle a new flame during Shabbat.


The earth turns from sunshine to dusk and then to darkness. As darkness descends, we prepare ourselves to light candles to welcome (Shabbat and) the festival of Pesach and as so often before, we assume the task of kindling candles in the night to enlighten the dark corners of our world. As we kindle these lights, we remember that our ancestors discovered freedom in the midst of the dark final night in Egypt. Behind us, though receding into the memories of even the oldest among us, we can still sense the fires of Auschwitz and Hiroshima, and we continue to face the terror of towers falling. We gather tonight to create from fire, not the heat of destruction, but the light of instruction; indeed to see more clearly the wisdom, strength and caring that glows from within each of us.

As we kindle the candles, we unite and identify ourselves with all Jews in other periods and places of our history. Let the candles we now light be a reflection of the light that shines within each one of us, and let that light radiate throughout our home. We praise the Source of Light that keeps alive the hope of freedom amidst the darkness of oppression.


We are about to light the candles, officially heralding the beginning of (Shabbat and) this festival night. As we light these candles, we pray that all those suffering in the world find light amid the darkness. We pray that our experience today helps us to ignite the spark of justice within each of us. We pray that we have the strength to carry forth this light into our homes, schools, offices, and houses of worship, creating a beautiful and bold flame that inspires others to work for the freedom and security of all innocent people. May these candles, lit on the Festival of Freedom, bring light into our hearts and minds. May they renew our courage to act for justice and freedom here and now. May they illumine the path to truth, justice and peace. And so we repeat the ancient blessing:

Blessing 1:

If the Seder falls on a Friday night, we add the words in parentheses, Shabbat v'shel, to welcome the sabbath as well as Pesach.

ברוך אתה יי אלהינו מלך העולם אשר קדשנו במצותיו וצונו להדליק נר של (שבת ושל) יום טוב

Transliteration: Baruch atah Adonai Elohaynoo melech ha-olam, asher keedshanoo b’meetzvotav v’tzeevanoo l’hadleek ner shel (Shabbat v’shel) yom tov.

English: Blesssed art thou, Lord our God, Whose presence fills the universe, Who has sanctified our lives through Your commandments and commanded us to kindle the Shabbat and festival lights.

Blessing 2:

ברוך אתה יי אלהינו מלך העולם שהחינו וקימנו והגיענו לזמן הזה

Transliteration: Baruch atah Adonai Elohaynoo melech ha-olam, sheh-hech-chi-ahnoo, vih-kee-yih-mah-noo, vih-hig-ee-ahnoo, lahz-mahn, hazeh.

English: Blessed art thou, Lord our God, King of the Universe, Who has kept us alive and brought us to this happy moment in our lives.

Women recite in unison:

May these candles, lit on the Festival of Freedom, bring light into our hearts and minds. May they illuminate the path to truth, justice and peace. As we light these candles, we pray that all those suffering in the world find light amid the darkness. We pray that our experience today helps us to renew our commitment to act for justice and freedom. We pray that we have the strength to carry forth this light into our homes, schools, offices, and houses of worship, creating a beautiful and bold flame that inspires others to work for the freedom and security of the innocent people everywhere.

May it be Your will, God of our ancestors, that You grant our families and all Israel a good and long life. Remember us with blessings and kindness. Fill our home with your Divine Presence. Give us the opportunity to raise our children and grandchildren to be truly wise, lovers of God, people of truth, who illuminate the world with Torah, good deeds and the work of the Creator. Please hear our prayer at this time and regard us as worthy descendants of our matriarchs Sarah, Rebecca, Rachel and Leah, and let the light of these candle burn and never be extinguished. Let the light of your face shine upon us.


Source :; Illustration: REMBRANDT Harmenszoon van Rijn, Jacob Blessing the Children of Joseph
Blessing the Children


The beautiful custom of blessing one’s children originates in the Bible. Just before Jacob died, he called all of his sons for a final blessing. As a special reward to Joseph, who remained righteous throughout his exile, he called forward Joseph’s two sons, Ephraim and Menashe, to give them a special blessing. Jacob's blessing was that they should be a blessing, an example to the Jewish people for all time, for they were united in their quest for the good of all, and possessed the strength of character to maintain Jewish values in a non - Jewish environment, thus becoming the benchmark for raising Jewish children. When we bless our daughters, we ask G-d to endow them with the qualities of our foremothers: insightfulness, generosity of spirit, sensitivity, and the ability to lead and inspire others.

We now invite all parents to bless their children. It is customary for parents to place their open hands on each child’s head and recite the following blessing:

For boys, the introductory line is:

May you be like Ephraim and Menashe.
יְשִׂימְךָ אֱלהיִם כְּאֶפְרַיְם וְכִמְנַשֶּׁה.

For girls, the introductory line is:

May you be like Sarah, Rebecca, Rachel, and Leah.
יְשִׂימֵךְ אֱלהיִם כְּשָׂרָה רִבְקָה רָחֵל וְלֵאָה.

For both boys and girls, the rest of the blessing is:

May God bless you and guard you.
יְבָרֶכְךָ יְהוָה וְיִשְׁמְרֶךָ
May God show you favor and be gracious to you.
יָאֵר יְהוָה פָּנָיו אֵלֶיךָ וִיחֻנֶּךָּ

May God show you kindness and grant you peace.
יִשָּׂא יְהוָה פָּנָיו אֵלֶיךָ וְיָשֵׂם לְךָ שָׁלום

Source : A Night to Remember; On Wings of Freedom, Ellen Caplan
Why Do We Drink Four Cups of Wine?


Tonight we are commanded to drink four cups of wine. Four is an important number in the Seder: four cups, four children, four questions, and four matriarchs in the "Who Knows One?" song. Four is an important number in Jewish thought as well: the four corners (arbah kanfot) of the talit and the four kinds of fruit from goodly trees for Sukkot.

There are many explanations offered for the custom of drinking four cups of wine. Some say they represent:

  • the four corners (arbah kanfot) of the talit, four corners of the world or the four compass points for freedom must reign everywhere
  • the four seasons of the year, for freedom must be guarded at all times
  • the four sides of a square, suggesting that only freedom brings completeness

The four cups of wine are also structurally connected to four verbal performances this evening:

  1. Kiddush, sanctifying the holiday
  2. Maggid, the storytelling
  3. Birkat HaMazon, completing the Pesach meal; and
  4. Hallel, completing the festival Psalms.


Two 16th century Kabbalist rabbis offer a different explanation, identifying the Four Cups with the Four Matriarchs of Israel. The Maharal of Prague (famous for the legend of Golem) and Rav Isaiah Horowitz of Tsfat explain:

  1. The Cup of Kiddush stands for Sarah who was the mother of a community of converts, believers by choice.
  2. The Cup of Maggid is for Rebecca who knew how to mother both Esav and Jacob, two opposed natures.
  3. The Cup of the Blessing after Eating represents Rachel whose son Joseph provided the whole family of Jacob with bread in a time of great famine.
  4. The Cup of Hallel (Praise) is for Leah who came to realize that the pursuit of the impossible, Jacob's love, must give way to appreciation of what one has. When her fourth child was born, Judah, she praised God: " This time I will thank God " (Genesis 29:35).


Above all, the four cups are traditionally believed to represent the four promises that G-d made to the Israelites (Exodus 6:6-7):

  • Ve-ho-tzei-ti , I WILL BRING YOU OUT
  • Ve-hi-Tzal-ti, I WILL DELIVER YOU
  • Ve-ga-al-ti , I WILL REDEEM YOU
  • Ve-la-kach-ti, I WILL TAKE YOU TO BE MY PEOPLE

While on the surface each promise seems to mean the same thing, the subtle differences in language are reminiscent of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs and the Israelites readiness to embrace the responsibilities that come with freedom. According to Maslow, basic physiological needs required for survival, air, food, water, clothing, shelter and sleep, must be met before one is able to meet the higher needs for safety and security; love, belonging and acceptance; respect, recognition, sense of accomplishment and self-worth; and finally self-actualization.

  1. Ve-ho-tzei-ti , I will bring you out from under the burdens of Mitzrayim, indicates the first step of G-d was to physically free the Israelites from the Land of Mitzrayim and the physical labors and hardships imposed upon them by the burden of slavery.
  2. Ve-hi-Tzal-ti , "I will deliver you from their bondage," indicates deliverance from the psychological bondage experienced as slaves. Even after being physically freed, the Israelites would have still had the mind-set of slaves and needed to understand that they were now safe and secure.
  3. Ve-ga-al-ti , "I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments," conjurs an image of both strenght and protection. When the people are redeemed, they will also be able to think of themselves as free and will no longer have to be passive and obey their masters. Only a free person can think of higher needs such as belongingness, love and self-worth.
  4. Ve-la-kackh-ti , "I will take you to Me for a people, and I will be to you a G-d," foreshadows the giving of the Torah on Mount Sinai and the Israelite's spiritual redemption and fulfillment.


G-d also makes a fifth promise: Ve-he-vei-ti ; I shall bring you to the land, but this promise had not yet been fulfilled when our Ancestors left Mitzrayim. The debate over whether this fifth promise should be celebrated by a cup of its own led to the decision to leave the answer to Elijah, herald of the messianic coming. Hence, the custom of Elijah's cup and the messianic fifth cup.

We are about to partake of the first cup of wine, commemorating G-d's promise, "I will bring you out from under the burdens of Mitzrayim."

Source : unkown


In the Talmud we learn that during the times of the Temple there was a law which required hands to be washed before eating any food which was dipped into a liquid. Because this hand-washing precedes Karpas, when we dip a green vegetable into saltwater, the Urchatz remains as a reminder of these times.

DIRECTIONS: Ask a child to carry a pitcher of water, basin and towel and pour wather over each guest's hands. The washing is done in silence and without a prayer.

Source : Song of Songs


(Raise dish containing Karpas) The word Karpas comes from the Greek, Karpos, meaning fruit of the soil. Though the historical origins of dipping Karpas at the seder simply reflect the accepted cuisine of the Greco-Roman symposium, the Rabbis added their own symbolic interpretations in order to connect dipping to the Pesach story. Passover, like many of our holidays, combines the celebration of an event from our Jewish memory with a recognition of the cycles of nature. As we remember the liberation from Egypt, we also recognize the stirrings of spring and rebirth happening in the world around us. The symbols on our table bring together elements of both kinds of celebration.


Poets throughout history have written songs of joy at the wonder of nature's beauty. It is traditional on Passover, to read from the Song of Songs.

For lo, the winter is past,

The rain is over and gone.

The flowers appear on Earth.

The time of singing is come,

And the voice of the dove is heard in our land.

The fig tree puttest forth her green figs,

And the vines in blossom give forth their fragrance.


My beloved's voice! Look, it's come

Skipping over the mountains, leaping over the hills!

My beloved is like a gazelle, a young deer,

Look! Standing behind our wall, watching at the window,

Peering through the lattice.

My beloved responds to me: Arise my companion,

My splendid one, come away!

For look, winter has passed,

The rain, it has transformed the earth and gone away,

Now buds appear on the earth, the time of singing has come,

The voice of the turtledove is heard in our land!

The fig tree presents her figs,

The blossoming vines uncork their fragrance,

Arise my companion, my splendid one,

Come away!

~ Song of Songs, 2:8-13



We will now take the parsley and dip it into salt water. As we say a blessing and eat the parsley, we remember that it was springtime when the Pesach story took place. We dip the greens in salt water to remind us of the tears of our ancestors who suffered the cruelties of slavery. As we taste the greens and salt water together we think about the freshness of spring and the tears of slavery. Before we eat it, we recite a short blessing together:

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, בּוֹרֵא פְּרִי הָאֲדָמָה

Transliteration: Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech ha-olam, borei p’ree ha-adama.

Translation: Blessed art thou, Lord our G-d, King of the Universe, who creates the fruits of the earth.

Source : unknown

DIRECTIONS: Take the middle matzah and break it into two, one piece larger than the other.

The larger piece is set aside to serve as Afikoman. This is traditionally hidden, by the leader of the Seder for the children to “steal” or “find” and then ransom for a something at the end of the Seder.

The smaller piece is put back, between the two matzot. This smaller piece, along with the top matzah is what will be used for the “Motzi-Matzah” and “Korech”


I will now break the middle matzah and hide one half for the Afikoman. Children, watch closely! After the meal, you'll have a chance to find the Afikoman which we will all share for our ritual dessert. We can't complete the seder without it! This reminds us that long ago the special gifts brought to the holy Temple in Jerusalem were shared. No matter where people live, sharing bread is a way of saying, "Your are my friend." It is also a way of sharing what we have with others.


The Pesach story begins in a broken world, amidst slavery and oppression. The sound of the breaking of the matzah sends us into that fractured existence, only to become whole again when we find the broken half, the Afikoman, at the end of the Seder. We are free, but we remember when we were slaves. We are whole, but we bring to mind those who are broken. The middle matzah is broken, but it is the larger part which is hidden. Because the future will be greater than the past, and tomorrow’s Passover nobler than yesterday’s exodus. The prospects for the dreamed future are overwhelming to the point of making us mute. So it is in silence, without blessing, that we break and hide the matzah and long for its recovery and our redemption.


Wrapping the matzah in the cover reminds us of our ancestors on their way out of Mitzrayim who wrapped up the dough before it had a chance to rise and carried it with their kneading troughs on their shoulders. It also reminds us that if you are poor, you do not know where your next meal is coming from and, therefore, do not eat everything that is in front of you. You hide a bit of food, a crust of bread, to make sure you won't starve after this meal is over.

Maggid - Beginning
Source : Hunger by Ben Shahn
Ha Lachma Anya

(Directions: Refill the wine cups, but don’t drink yet!)


Ha lach-ma anya, dee ach-a-lu, ah-va-hatana, b'arah d'meetz-ra-yeem.

Kol deech-feen yei-tei v'yei-chol, kol deetz-reech yei-tei v'yeef-sach.

Ha-shah-tah ha-cha, l'shah-nah habah-ah b'ara d'yisra-el. Ha-shah-ta avdei, l'shah-nah haba-ah b'nei choreen.


The central imperative of the Seder is to tell the story of the Exodus. The Bible instructs, “You shall tell your child on that day, saying: “ This is because of what Adonai did for me when I came out of Egypt.' ” (Exodus 13:8) We relate the story of our ancestors to regain the memories as our own. Maggid starts with Ha Lachma Anya when we invite anyone to come join us at our Seder.

Maggid - Beginning
Source : Art work: Hunger by Ben Shahn; A Different Night - Classic Edition
Let All Who are Hungry, Come and Eat

Leader lifts matzah plate and all recite in unison:

This is the bread of affliction, which our ancestors ate in the land of Mitzrayim.

Let all who are hungry come and eat.

Let all who are in need, come and share the Pesach meal.

This year, we are here.

Next year, in the land of Israel.

This year, we are slaves.

Next year, we will be free.


We eat unleavened bread at Pesach to remind us of the dough our ancestors brought out from Egypt. In their rush to leave, they did not have the chance to let it rise. Matzah is then the bread of liberation. It is a mark of an exodus whose rapid pace overtook them unprepared. The Egyptians, who enslaved them, suddenly expelled them after God brought the plague on the first born. Yet, “ha lachma,” the first official explanation for matzah in the Haggadah, calls it the “bread of affliction” based on Deuteronomy 16:3, “You shall eat unleavened bread, bread of “oni” (distress) – for you departed from the land of Egypt hurriedly.” Here matzah is a memorial not of liberation, but of slavery. The life of oppression is marked by a pressured, “hurried” pace, for the slaves do not control the rhythm of their existence.


The gesture of raising the matzah of poverty and persecution is an allusion to G-d’s lifting up the poor. Before commencing any meal, Rav Huna of Babylonia used to open the door and announce: “Let all who are in need come and eat.” Concern for the needy is characteristic of every Jewish celebration. The Torah emphasizes: “You shall rejoice in your festival – with your son and daughter, your male and female servant, the Levi, the stranger, the orphan and the widow in your communities.”

Maimonides expands and explains this principle: “When a person eats and drinks at the festive meal he is obligated to provide food for the stranger, the orphan, and the widow, along with the rest of the poor and despondent. But whoever locks the doors of the courtyard, and eats and drinks with his wife and children, and does not provide food and drink for poor or suffering people, this is not a “mitzvah celebration” but a “celebration of the belly” and this kind of celebration is a disgrace.” 

We continue this Biblical tradition of hospitality today by collecting money to fund preparations for the holiday by the indigent, and by inviting guests to the Seder table. Communities should provide networks of hospitality so that no Jew, whether a newcomer or an elderly person, need spend the holiday alone and forsaken.


“This year we are slaves.”   What can these words mean?

We are slaves because yesterday our people were in slavery and memory makes yesterday real for us.

We are slaves because today there are still people in chains around the world and no one can be truly free while others are in chains.

We are slaves because freedom means more than broken chains. Where there is poverty and hunger and homelessness, there is no freedom; where there is prejudice and bigotry and discrimination, there is no freedom; where there is violence and torture and war, there is no freedom.

And where each of us is less than he or she might be, we are not free, not yet.

And who, this year, can be deaf to the continuing oppression of the downtrodden, who can be blind to the burdens and the rigors that are now to be added to the most vulnerable in our midst?

If these things be so, who among us can say that he or she is free?

-- Four Questions
Source : Love and Justice in Time
All Questions are Welcome Here!

The whole point of the seder is to ask questions. This is your time to ask about things that confuse you, things you don’t understand, or even things you don’t agree with. There really is no is no such thing as a stupid question, especially tonight.

- Joy Levitt (age 16)


Questions are not only welcome during the course of the evening but are vital to tonight’s journey. Our obligation at this seder involves traveling from slavery to freedom, prodding ourselves from apathy to action, encouraging the transformation of silence into speech, and providing a space where all different levels of belief and tradition can co-exist safely. Because leaving Mitzrayim--the narrow places, the places that oppress us—is a personal as well as a communal passage, your participation and thoughts are welcome and encouraged.

We remember that questioning itself is a sign of freedom. The simplest question can have many answers, sometimes complex or contradictory ones, just as life itself is fraught with complexity and contradictions. To see everything as good or bad, matzah or maror, Jewish or Muslim, Jewish or “Gentile”, is to be enslaved to simplicity. Sometimes, a question has no answer. Certainly, we must listen to the question, before answering.

-- Four Questions
-- Four Questions
The 4 questions

The four questions are usually asked by the youngest child that can say it and then sometimes recited again by everyone.

-- Four Questions

Hebrew Transliteration:

Mah nish-tah-nah ha-ly-la ha-zeh, me-kol ha-lay-lot

1) Sheh' beh-chol ha-lay-loht, ain anu maht-bee-leen, ah-fee-loo pa'ahm echat, ha-ly-la ha-zeh sh-tei peh'ah-mim?

2) Sheh' beh-chol ha-lay-loht, anu ohch-leem, chah-maytz oo-matzah, ha-ly-la ha-zeh koo-loh maztah?

3) Sheh' beh-chol ha-lay-loht, anu ohch-leem, sheh'ar yeh-rah-kot, ha-ly-la ha-zeh mah-ror?

4) She' beh-chol ha-lay-lot, anu ohch-leem, bain yosh-veen bain miss-oo-bean, ha-ly-la ha-zeh coo-la-nu miss-oo-bean?

DIRECTIONS: After the 4 Questions are recited in Hebrew, one of the youngest present reads each question one-by-one, as each question is answered by an older child or adult.

What makes this night different from all other nights?

1) On all nights we need not dip even once, on this night we do so twice?

2) On all nights we eat chametz or matzah, and on this night only matzah?

3) On all nights we eat any kind of vegetables, and on this night maror?

4) On all nights we eat sitting upright or reclining, and on this night we all recline?


-- Four Questions
Avadim Hayeenu - Once we were slaves to Pharoh in Egypt


Avah-deem ha-yee-new, l’faroh b’mitz-rai-eem. Vah-yo-tzi-ay-nu Ah-doh-nai, El-o-hay-new, me-sham, b’yad chazak-ah, oo-viz-ro-ah n’too-yah, v’ee-loo lo ho-tzi ha-kah-dosh Ba-ruch who et ah-vo-tei-new mi-mitz-rai-eem, hah-rei ah-new, oo-vah-nay-new, oo-vah-’nei vah-nay-new, m’shoo-bah-deem ha-yee-new l’far-oh b’mitz-rai-eem. Va’ah-fee-loo koo-lah-new cha-cha-mim, koo-lah-new n’vo-neem, koo-lah-new z’kay-neem, koo-lah-new yo-d’eem et ha-to-rah, mitz-vah ah-lay-new l’sah-pair b'tziat mitz-rai-eem. V’chol ha-mar-beh l’sah-pair b'tziat mitzrayim, ha-ray zeh m’shoo-bach.

-- Four Questions
Source : Haggadah for the American Family, 1966

LEADER  We will now answer the four questions and begin to tell the story of our enslavement in Egypt

ASSEMBLED:  Once we were slaves to Pharoah in Egypt, and the Lord,  in His goodness and mercy, brought us forth from that land, with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm.

LEADER:  Had He not brought our ancestors out of Mitzrayim, we and our children and our children's children would still be enslaved to Pharoh in Mitzrayim and deprived of liberty.

ASSEMBLED:  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 man's burning desire for freedom.  

PARTICIPANT:  The first question asked concerns the use of Matzoh. We eat these unleavened breads 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 they were still flat.

PARTICIPANT The second question asks why we eat only bitter herbs tonight. We partake of the Morror, bitter herbs, on this night so that we might taste of some bitterness to remind us how bitter is the lot of one caught in the grip of slavery.

PARTICIPANT The third question asks why we dip on this night. We dip twice in the course of this Seder: Greens in salt water and Morror in Charoset, once to replace the tears with gratefulness, and once to sweeten the 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 man. On this night of Passover, we demonstrate our sense of complete freedom by reclining.  

-- Four Children
Source :
The Four Children

בָּרוּךְ הַמָּקוֹם, בָּרוּךְ הוּא. בָּרוּךְ שֶׁנָּתַן תּוֹרָה לְעַמּוֹ יִשְׂרָאֵל, בָּרוּךְ הוּא. כְּנֶגֶד אַרְבָּעָה בָנִים דִּבְּרָה תּוֹרָה . אֶחָד חָכָם, וְאֶחָד רָשָׁע, וְאֶחָד תָּם, וְאֶחָד שֶׁאֵינוֹ יוֹדֵעַ לִשְׁאוֹל

חָכָם מָה הוּא אוֹמֵר? מַה הָעֵדוֹת וְהַחֻקִּים וְהַמִשְׁפָּטִים אֲשֶׁר צִוָּה יי אֱלֹהֵינוּ אֶתְכֶם? וְאַף אַתָּה אֱמָר לוֹ כְּהִלְכוֹת הַפֶּסַח: אֵין מַפְטִירִין אַחַר הַפֶּסַח אֲפִיקוֹמָן.

רָשָׁע מָה הוּא אוֹמֵר? מָה הָעֲבֹדָה הַזֹּאת לָכֶם? לָכֶם - וְלֹא לוֹ. וּלְפִי שֶׁהוֹצִיא אֶת צְמוֹ מִן הַכְּלָל כָּפַר בְּעִקָּר. וְאַף אַתָּה הַקְהֵה אֶת שִנָּיו וֶאֱמֹר לוֹ: בַּעֲבוּר זֶה עָשָׂה יי לִי בְּצֵאתִי מִמִּצְרָיִם. לִי - וְלֹא לוֹ. אִילּוּ הָיָה שָׁם, לֹא הָיָה נִגְאָל

רָשָׁע מָה הוּא אוֹמֵר? מָה הָעֲבֹדָה הַזֹּאת לָכֶם? לָכֶם - וְלֹא לוֹ. וּלְפִי שֶׁהוֹצִיא אֶת עַצְמוֹ מִן הַכְּלָל כָּפַר בְּעִקָּר. וְאַף אַתָּה הַקְהֵה אֶת שִנָּיו וֶאֱמֹר לוֹ: בַּעֲבוּר זֶה עָשָׂה יי לִי בְּצֵאתִי מִמִּצְרָיִם. לִי - וְלֹא לוֹ. אִילּוּ הָיָה שָׁם, לֹא הָיָה נִגְאָל

תָּם מָה הוּא אוֹמֵר? מַה זֹּאת? וְאָמַרְתָּ אֵלָיו: בְּחֹזֶק יָד הוֹצִיאָנוּ יי מִמִּצְרָיִם, מִבֵּית עֲבָדִים

ושֶׁאֵינוֹ יוֹדֵעַ לִשְׁאוֹל - אַתְּ פְּתַח לוֹ, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וְהִגַּדְתָּ לְבִנְךָ בַּיוֹם הַהוּא לֵאמֹר, בַּעֲבוּר זֶה עָשָׂה יי לִי בְּצֵאתִי מִמִּצְרָיִם


The Torah speaks of four types of children: one is wise, one is wicked, one is simple, and one does not know how to ask.

The Wise One asks: "What is the meaning of the laws and traditions God has commanded?" (Deuteronomy 6:20) You should teach him all the traditions of Passover, even to the last detail.

The Wicked One asks: "What does this ritual mean to you?" (Exodus 12:26) By using the expression "to you" he excludes himself from his people and denies God. Shake his arrogance and say to him: "It is because of what the Lord did for me when I came out of Egypt..." (Exodus 13:8) "For me" and not for him -- for had he been in Egypt, he would not have been freed.

The Simple One asks: "What is all this?" You should tell him: "It was with a mighty hand that the Lord took us out of Egypt, out of the house of bondage."

As for the One Who Does Not Know How To Ask, you should open the discussion for him, as it is written: "And you shall explain to your child on that day, 'It is because of what the Lord did for me when I came out of Egypt." (Exodus 13:8)

-- Four Children
Source : Written by Ben Aronin in 1948
The Ballad of the Four Sons

(Sung to the tune of Clemintine)

Said the father to his children,

"At the seder you will dine,

You will eat your fill of matzah,

You will drink four cups of wine."

Now this father had no daughters,

But his sons they numbered four.

One was wise and one was wicked,

One was simple and a bore.

And the fourth was sweet and winsome,

he was young and he was small.

While his brothers asked the questions

he could scarcely speak at all.

Said the wise one to his father

"Would you please explain the laws?

Of the customs of the seder

Will you please explain the cause?"

And the father proudly answered,

"As our fathers ate in speed,

Ate the paschal lamb 'ere midnight

And from slavery were freed."

So we follow their example

And 'ere midnight must complete

All the seder and we should not

After 12 remain to eat.

Then did sneer the son so wicked

"What does all this mean to you?"

And the father's voice was bitter

As his grief and anger grew.

"If you yourself don't consider

As son of Israel,

Then for you this has no meaning

You could be a slave as well."

Then the simple son said simply

"What is this," and quietly

The good father told his offspring

"We were freed from slavery."

But the youngest son was silent

For he could not ask at all.

His bright eyes were bright with wonder

As his father told him all.

My dear children, heed the lesson

and remember evermore

What the father told his children

Told his sons that numbered four.

-- Exodus Story
Source :; Image: by Arthur Szyk: The Rabbis at B’nai B’rak (Lodz) 1935
The Rabbis of Benei Berak

מַעֲשֶׂה בְּרַבִּי אֱלִיעֶזֶר וְרַבִּי יְהוֹשֻעַ וְרַבִּי אֶלְעָזָר בֶּן עֲזַרְיָה וְרַבְּי עֲקִיבָא וְרַבִּי טַרְפוֹן שֶהָיוּ מְסֻבִּין בִּבְנֵי בְרַ. וְהָיוּ מְסַפְּרִים בִּיצִיאַת מִצְרַיִם כָּל אוֹתוֹ הַלַּיְלָה עַד שֶׁבָּאוּ תַלְמִידֵיהֶם

:וְאָמְרוּ לָהֶם. רַבּוֹתֵינוּ. הִגִּיעַ זְמַן קְרִיאַת שְׁמַע שֶׁל שַׁחֲרִית

Ma-aseh b'rabi Eli-ezer, v'rabi Y'hoshua, v'rabi Elazar ben azaryah, v'rabi Akiva, v'rabi Tarfon, she-hayu m'subin bivnei vrak, v'hayu m'sap'rim bitzi-at mitzrayim, kol oto halaylah, ad sheba-u talmideihem v'am'ru lahem. Raboteinu, higi-a z'man k'ri-at sh'ma, shel shacharit.


It once happened that Rabbis Eliezer, Joshua, Elazar ben Azaryah, Akiva and Tarfon were reclining at the seder table in Bnei Brak. They spent the whole night discussing the Exodus until their students came and said to them: "Rabbis, it is time for us to recite the Shema

אָמַר אֶלְעָזָר בֶּן עֲזַרְיָה : הֲרֵי אֲנִי כְבֶ שִׁבְעִים שָׁנָה, וְלֹא זָכִיתִי שֶׁתֵּאָמֵר יְצִיאַת מִצְרַים בַּלֵּילוֹת עַד שֶׁדְּרָשָׁה בֶּן זוֹמָא: שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר, לְמַעַן תִּזְכֹּר אֶת יוֹם צֵאתְךָ מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיְם כָּל יְמֵי חַיֶּיךָ יְמֵי חַיֶּיךָ הַיָמִים, כָּל יְמֵי חַיֶּיךָ - הַלֵּילוֹת. וַחֲכָמִים אוֹמְרִים: יְמֵי חַיֶּיךָ הָעוֹלָם הַזֶּה,כָּל יְמֵי חַיֶּיךָ לְהָבִיא לִימוֹת הַמָשִׁיחַ

Amar rabi Elazar ben Azaryah. Harei ani k'ven shivim shanah, v'lo zachiti, shetei-ameir y'tzi-at mitzrayim baleilot. Ad shed'rashah ben zoma. Shene-emar: l'ma-an tizkor, et yom tzeitcha mei-eretz mitzrayim, kol y'mei chayecha. Y'mei chayecha hayamim. Kol y'mei chayecha haleilot. Vachachamim om'rim. Y'mei chayecha ha-olam hazeh. Kol y'mei chayecha l'havi limot hamashi-ach.


Rabbi Elazar ben Azaryah, who was only 18 years old, said: "I am like a seventy-year old man and I have not succeeded in understanding why the Exodus from Egypt should be mentioned at night, until Ben Zoma explained it by quoting: "In order that you may remember the day you left Egypt all the days of your life." The Torah adds the word all to the phrase the days of your life to indicate that the nights are meant as well. The sages declare that "the days of your life" means the present world and "all " includes the messianic era.

-- Exodus Story
A Midrashic Dialogue

יָכוֹל מֵרֹאשׁ חֹדֶשׁ, תַּלְמוּד לוֹמַר בַּיוֹם הַהוּא, אִי בַּיוֹם הַהוּא יָכוֹל מִבְּעוֹד יוֹם, תַּלְמוּד לוֹמַר בַּעֲבוּר זֶה - בַּעֲבוּר זֶה לֹא אָמַרְתִּי אֶלָא בְּשָׁעָה שֶׁיֵשׁ מַצָה וּמָרוֹר מֻנָּחִים לְפָנֶיךָ.

Yachol meirosh chodesh, talmud lomar bayom hahu. Iy bayom hahu, yachol mib'od yom. Talmud lomar ba-avur zeh. Ba-avur zeh lo amarti, ela b'sha-ah sheyeish matzah u-maror munachim l'fanecha.


"And you shall tell the story to your child on that day: Because of this that G-d did for me..." (exodus 13:8).

One might think that the Haggadah should be recited on the first day of the month of Nisan as a preparation for Pesach, but the Torah says: "on that day because of what the Lord did for me" which means that the story of the Exodus should be recited when Pesach begins. We might think that "day" means that we should tell the story during the daytime but the text also says, "because of this;" which means that we must have something that we can point to and we therefore cannot start the seder until the matzo and marror are set out before us, on Passover night when we are obliged to eat them.

מִתְּחִלָּה עוֹבְדֵי עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה הָיוּ אֲבוֹתֵינוּ, וְעַכְשָׁיו קֵרְבָנוּ הַמָּקוֹם לַעֲבֹדָתוֹ, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַיֹאמֶר יְהוֹשֻעַ אֶל כָּל הָעָם, כֹּה אָמַר יי אֱלֹהֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל : בְּעֵבֶר הַנָּהָר יָשְׁבוּ אֲבוֹתֵיכֶם מֵעוֹלָם, תֶּרַח אֲבִי אַבְרָהָם וַאֲבִי נָחוֹר, וַיַּעַבְדוּ אֱלֹהִים אֲחֵרִים. וָאֶקַח אֶת אֲבִיכֶם אֶת אַבְרָהָם מֵעֵבֶר הַנָּהָר וָאוֹלֵךְ אוֹתוֹ בְּכָל אֶרֶץ כְּנָעַן, וָאַרְבֶּה אֶת זַרְעוֹ וָאֶתֵּן לוֹ אֶת יִצְחָק, וָאֶתֵּן לְיִצְחָק אֶת יַעֲקֹב וְאֶת עֵשָׂיו. וָאֶתֵּן לְעֵשָׂו אֶת הַר שֵּׂעִיר לָרֶשֶׁת אֹתוֹ, וְיַעֲקֹב וּבָנָיו יָרְדוּ מִצְרָיִם

Mit'chilah ov'dei avodah zarah hayu avoteinu. V'achshav keir'vanu hamakom la-avodato. Shene-emar: Vayomer Y'hoshua el kol ha-am. Koh amar Adonai Elohei yisra-eil, b'eiver hanahar yash'vu avoteichem mei-olam, Terach avi avraham va-avi nachor. Vaya-avdu Elohim acheirim. Va-ekach et avichem et avraham mei-eiver ha-nahar, va-oleich oto b'chol eretz k'na-an. Va-arbeh et zaro, va-eten lo et Yitzchak. Va-etein l'yitzchak et Ya-akov v'et Eisav. Va-etein l'eisav et har sei-ir, lareshet oto. V'ya-akov uva-nav yar'du mitzrayim.


At first our forefathers worshiped idols, but then the Omnipresent brought us near to divine service, as it is written: "Joshua said to all the people: so says the Lord God of Israel--your fathers have always lived beyond the Euphrates River, Terah the father of Abraham and Nahor; they worshipped other gods. I took your father Abraham from the other side of the river and led him through all the land of Canaan. I multiplied his family and gave him Isaac. To Isaac I gave Jacob and Esau; to Esau I gave Mount Seir to inherit, however Jacob and his children went down to Egypt."

בָּרוּךְ שׁוֹמֵר הַבְטָחָתוֹ לְיִשְׂרָאֵל. בָּרוּךְ הוּא. שֶׁהַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא חִשַּׁב אֶת הַקֵּץ לַעֲשׂוֹת כְּמוֹ שֶּׁאָמַר לְאַבְרָהָם אָבִינוּ בִּבְרִית בֵּין הַבְּתָרִים. שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַיֹּאמֶר לְְאַבְרָם, יָדֹע תֵּדַע כִּי גֵר יִהְיֶה זַרְעֲךָ בְּאֶרֶץ לֹא לָהֶם וַעֲבָדוּם וְעִנּוּ אֹתָם אַרְבַּע מֵאוֹת שנה: וְגם אֶת הַגּוֹי אֲשֶׁר יַעֲבֹדוּ דָּן אָנֹכִי וְאַחֲרֵי כֵן יֵצְאוּ בִּרְכֻשׁ גָּדוֹל

Baruch shomeir havtachato l'yisra-eil. Baruch hu. Shehakadosh Baruch hu chishav et hakeitz, la-asot k'mah she-amar l'avraham avinu bivrit bein hab'tarim. Shene-emar: vayomer l'avram yadoa teida, ki geir yihyeh zaracha, b'eretz lo lahem, va-avadum v'inu otam arba meiot shanah. V'gam et hagoy asher ya-avodu dan anochi. V'acharei chein yeitz'u, birchush gadol.

Participant: Blessed be He who keeps His promise to Israel; praised be He. The holy one, blessed be he, predetermined the time for our final deliverance in order to fulfill what He had pledged to our father Abraham in a covenant, as it is written: "He said to Abram, your descendants will surely sojourn in a land that is not their own, and they will be enslaved and afflicted for four hundred years; however, I will punish the nation that enslaved them, and afterwards they shall come out with great substance."

Leader: We now lift up our cups of wine and cover the matzah, as we join in song and recall God's promise to Abraham, emphasizing eternal divine watchfulness.

וְהִיא שֶׁעָמְדָה לַאֲבוֹתֵינוּ וְלָנוּ, שֶׁלֹּא אֶחָד בִּלְבָד עָמַד עָלֵינוּ לְכַלּוֹתֵנוּ, אֶלָּא שֶׁבְּכָל דּוֹר וָדוֹר עוֹמְדִים עָלֵינוּ לְכַלוֹתֵנוּ, וְהַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא מַצִּילֵנוּ מִיָּדָם.

V'he sheh am'dah, la-ah-vo-tei-nu, v'la-nu. Sheh-lo echad beel-vad, a-mad ah-leinu l'cha-lo-tei-nu. Eh-la she-b'chol dor va-dor, om'deem ah-lei-nu l'cha-lo-tei-nu, v'ha-ka-dosh Bah-ruch hoo matz-ee-lei-nu mi-yah-dam.

This covenant that remained constant for our ancestors and for us has saved us from those who arose to destroy us in every generation, and throughout history when any stood against us to annihilate us, the Kadosh Baruch Hu kept saving us from them.


We now lower our wine cups and will continue with the recitation of the traditional Rabinic discussion of the Passover Exodus story as recorded in the torah, beginning first with the threat of Israel from Lavan and then the threat from Pharoah. The English translation is found on page 38.

-- Exodus Story
-- Exodus Story
My Father was a Wandering Aramean?


"Come and learn what Laban the Aramean sought to do to our father, Jacob. For Pharaoh issued his edict against only the males, but Laban sought to uproot us all, as it is said, ‘An Aramean would have destroyed my father, and he went down to Egypt and he became there a great nation, strong and numerous.’"

One of the most difficult texts in the Haggadah is "arami oved avi." The Haggadah includes the Rabbinic interpretation of the verse, reading it as "An Aramean tried to destroy my father." This verse, is at the center of the Haggadah and its rabbinic interpretation differs dramatically from the Torah text. The traditional Haggadah provides a long section of midrash, rabbinic interpretation, in which the verses of Deuteronomy 26:5-8 are examined in light of the spiritual and political history of the Jewish people. 

The midrash tells us that if you change the vowels from "oved" to "ibed," the meaning is changed from "wandering" to "destroyed." Thus, " A wandering Aramean was my father" will read, "An Aramean tried to destroy my father."  Jacob lived in Aram, in Mesopotamia, while courting Rachel and Leah and working for their father Laban, an Aramean. Consequently, Laban is usually seen as the Aramean who would have sought to destroy Jacob, reminding us of the treachery of Laban, who tricked Jacob into marrying Leah before Rachel, then tricked him into twenty years of servitude, and finally tried to deny him his dowry. Laban may be viewed as the symbol of everyone who has tried to destroy the Jewish People.

While Rashi accepted this reading, Ibn Ezra strongly rejected it, in favor of the interpretation that the verse refers to Jacob, who, when he was in Aram, was lost. Rashbam also rejected Rashi’s interpretation, but argued that the verse more appropriately applies to Abraham, who can correctly be identified as an Aramean.


Why does the Haggadah consider Laban worse than Pharaoh?

R. Azriel Hildesheimer, a nineteenth century German Rabbi, explains that Jacob and his sons went down to Egypt because Joseph was already there. Joseph had been sold by his brothers into Egypt because his brothers had envied the way their father favored their youngest brother, who was born in Jacob’s old age. Joseph was born in Jacob’s old age because Rachel’s marriage had been delayed. Rachel’s marriage had been delayed because Laban tricked Jacob by giving him Leah rather than Rachel as a wife.
Had Jacob married Rachel first, Joseph would have been the firstborn and his brothers wouldn’t have envied him and wouldn’t have sold him into slavery. If he had not been sold into slavery, Jacob and his sons would not have gone down to Egypt. If they had not gone down to Egypt, their descendants would not have been enslaved under Pharaoh. We learn from all this that if it had not been for the act of deceit of Laban, there would not have been a Pharaoah as we know him.

-- Exodus Story
Source : Joseph and His Brethren Welcomed by Pharaoh, watercolor by James Tissot (c. 1900)
And he went down into Egypt and soujourned there


"And he went down to Egypt, and he sojourned there with but a few persons and there became a nation, great and mighty and numerous."

"He sojourned there:" This tells us that our father Jacob did not go down to Egypt to settle, but only to live there temporarily. Thus it is said, "They said to Pharaoh, We have come to sojourn in the land, for there is no pasture for your servants' flocks because the hunger is severe in the land of Canaan; and now, please, let your servants dwell in the land of Goshen."

"Few in number:" As it is said: "Our ancestors went down to Egypt with seventy persons, and now, the Lord, your G‑d, has made you as numerous as the stars of heaven."

"And he became there a nation:" This teaches that Israel was a distinctive people, even in Egypt.

"Great and mighty:" As it is said: "And the children of Israel were fruitful and increased abundantly, and multiplied and became very, very mighty, and the land became filled with them."

"And numerous:" As it is said: "I have caused you to multiply like the growth of the field, and you have increased and become great and adorned with ornaments. Your breast is fashioned, and your hair is grown whereas you were naked and bare."

-- Exodus Story
Source : Illustration: Hamburg, 1740, Life was Embittered for the Jews
And the Egyptians Ill-Treated Us and Afflicted Us and Laid Heavy Bondage upon Us.


And the Egyptians ill-treated us, afflicted us and laid heavy bondage upon us.

"The Egyptians ill-treated us:"   As it is said: Come, let us deal wisely with them lest they multiply and, if there should be a war against us, they will join our enemies, fight against us and leave the land."

"And they afflicted us:"   As it is said: "They set taskmasters over the people of Israel to make them suffer with their burdens, and they built storage cities for Pharaoh, Pitom and Ramses."

"And they laid heavy bondage upon us:"   As it is said: "The Egyptians made the children of Israel work with rigor. And they made their lives bitter with hard work, with mortar and with bricks and all manner of service in the field, all their work which they made them work with rigor."

-- Exodus Story
And We Cried unto the Eternal, G-d of our Fathers


And we cried out to Adonai, the G‑d of our ancestors and the Eternal heard our voice and He saw our affliction and our sorrow and our oppression.  

As it is said: During that long period, the king of Egypt died and the children of Israel sighed from servitude. Their cries went up to G-d and G-d heard their sighs and remembered his covenant with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

"And He saw our affliction" refers the Pharoah's forced separation of husbands and wives.

"And our sorrow" refers to Pharoah's decree that "Every son that is born ye shall be cast into the river."

"And our oppression" refers to the the force applied against the Israelites.

-- Exodus Story
Source : Illustration: John Martin,The Seventh Plague of Egypt, 1823
And the Eternal Brought us Forth from Egypt


"And the Eternal brought us forth from Mitzrayim, with a mighty hand and with an outstretched arm, with great awe and with signs and wonders."

And the Eternal brought us forth from Mitzrayim : And as I pass through the land of Mitzrayim in that night, I and not an angel, I shall smite every first-born in the land of Mitzrayim; I and not a seraph; and against all the gods of Mitzrayim, I shall bring judgements; I and not an emissary; I Adonoi, I and no other! By the repeated use of the word "I," the Haggadah tells us that we should praise only G-d for our redemption.

"With a mighty hand" refers to the cattle plague. As it is said, "Behold the hand of Adonai is against the cattle in the field, the horses and donkeys; camels, herds and flocks; a very grievous plague.

"With an outstretched arm" refers to the sword. As it is said, "And a drawn sword in His hand stretched out over Jerusalem."

"With great awe" refors to the appearance of the Divine Presence to the Israelites.

"With signs" refers to the staff with which miracles were performed. As it is said, "Take this staff in your hand, that you may do the signs with it."

"And with wonders" refers to the plague of blood. As it is said, "And I will show wonders in the heavens, and in the earth blood and fire and pillars of smoke."

Another explanation is that "with a strong hand refers to two plagues; "with an outstretched arm," two more; "with great awe," two more; "with signs," two more; and "with wonders," two more, totalling the ten plagues which the Holy One, blessed be He, brought upon the Egyptians in Mitzrayim.

-- Exodus Story

When Israel was in Egypt Land, Let my people go.
Oppressed so hard they could not stand, Let my people go.
Go down Moses way down in Egypt land, Tell old Pharaoh,
Let my people go.

Thus saith the lord bold Moses said, Let my people go.
If not I'll strike your first born dead, Let my people go.
Go down Moses way down in Egypt land, Tell old Pharaoh,
Let my people go.

The Lord told Moses what to do, Let my people go.
To lead the children of Israel through, Let my people go.
Go down Moses way down in Egypt land, Tell old Pharaoh,
Let my people go.

When they had reached the other shore, Let my people go
They sang a song of triumph o'er, Let my people go.
Go down Moses way down in Egypt land, Tell old Pharaoh,
Let my people go.

-- Ten Plagues
Source : Illustration: Arthur Szyk; Text: Traditional Haggadot
The Ten Plagues


Despite the Torah's suggestion that all the Egyptians participated in our enslavement and thus deserved punishment, we do not savor their suffering. The Talmud tells us that as the Egyptians were flailing about in the sea, the angels wanted to sing Halleluyah for Israel's redemption, but G-d rebuked them saying, "How can you sing My praises when My children are drowning?" The Book of Proverbs cautions us, "Do not rejoyce when your enemy falls." We reduce the jubilation we might have felt over our rescue by removing from our cups of joyous wine a drop of joy untasted for each plague suffered by our oppresors. As we read each plague, we remove a drop of wine with a finger or spoon and place it on a napkin or plate as we remember not only our joy, but our captors' sorrow.

We read together:

אֵלּוּ עֶשֶׂר מַכּוֹת שֶׁהֵבִיא הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא עַל הַמִּצְרִים בְּמִצְרַים , וְאֵלוּ הֵן

Eilu eser makot sheheivi hakadosh baruch hu al hamitzrim b'mitzrayim, v'eilu hein:

These are the Plagues that the Holy One, blessed be He, brought upon Mitzrayim:

Blood | Dahm | דָּם

Frogs | Tzi-far-dey-ah | צְפֵרְדֵּע

Lice | Key-neem | כִּנִים

Beasts | Ah-rov | עָרוֹב

Cattle Plague | Deh-ver | דֶּבֶר

Boils | Sh’chin | שְׁחִין

Hail | Bah-rahd | בָּרד

Locusts | Ar-beh | אַרְבֶּה

Darkness | Cho-shech | חשֶׁךְ

Slaying of First Born | Mah-kat Beh-cho-rot | מַכַּת בְּכוֹרוֹת


To help us remember their order, Rabbi Yehudah abbreviated the plagues thus:

Assembled: ( D’TZ”KH A-Da”SH B’AH”V) דְּצַ״ךְ עַדַ״שׁ בְּאַחַ״ב


The Maharal of Prague, the great Rabbi Judah Loewe, said that Rabbi Yehudah's acronym reminds us that the plagues may be understood in three groups. Blood, Frogs and Lice all attacked the Egyptians from below. The second group, Beasts, Cattle Plague, and Boils; attacked the Egyptians on their own level. The third group, Hail, Locusts, and Darkness; attacked the Egyptians from the heavens above. Thus, all creation was turned against the Egyptians, while in the Slaying of the First-Born, listed alone, it is G-d alone, who seals the destruction of Mitzrayim.

-- Ten Plagues
Source : multiple sources
Ten Modern Plagues


The traditional Haggadah lists ten plagues that afflicted the Egyptians. While we are free and blessed with so many privileges, Passover is a good time to remember the many who are less fortunate. Let us recite a list of some of the plagues that still affect many, both in the US and worldwide, and spill 10 more drops of wine as we vow to take action to stop the injustices in our world.


  1. War, Violence, Abduction and Torture
  2. Poverty
  3. Hunger, malnutrition and a lack of potable water
  4. Homelessness
  5. Illiteracy and a lack of access to education
  6. Hopelessness and fear
  7. Pollution and climate change
  8. Intolerance, Bigotry, Discrimination, Ignorance and Hatred
  9. Tyranny, oppression, and modern-day slavery
  10. Indifference and silence
-- Cup #2 & Dayenu
Source : Crossing at the Red Sea by Marc Chagall
It Would Have Been Enough! Dayenu!

Leader: We will now join in singing Dayenu.

אִלוּ הוֹצִיאָנוּ מִמִצְרַים, וְלֹא עָשָׂה בָּהֶם שְׁפָטִים, דַּיֵינוּ

Ilu hotzi’anu mimitzrayim, v’lo asah bahem shfatim, dayenu.

אִלוּ עָשָׂה בָּהֶם שְׁפָטִים, וְלֹא עָשָׂה בֵאלֹהֵיהֶם, דַּיֵינוּ

lu asah bahem shfatim, v’lo asah vailoheihem, dayenu.

אִלוּ עָשָׂה בֵאלֹהֵיהֶם, וְלֹא הָרַג אֶת בְּכוֹרֵיהֶם, דַּיֵינוּ

Ilu asah vailoheihem, v’lo harag et bichoraihem, dayenu.

אִלוּ הָרַג אֶת בְּכוֹרֵיהֶם, וְלֹא נָתַן לָנוּ אֶת מָמוֹנָם, דַּיֵינוּ

Ilu harag et bichoraihem, v’lo natan lanu mamonam, dayenu.

אִלוּ נָתַן לָנוּ אֶת מָמוֹנָם, וְלֹא קָרַע לָנוּ אֶת הַיָּם, דַּיֵינוּ

Ilu natan lanu mamonam, v’lo karah lanu et hayam, dayenu.

אִלוּ קָרַע לָנוּ אֶת הַיָּם, וְלֹא הֶעֱבֵירָנוּ בְּתוֹכוֹ בֶּחָרָבָה, דַּיֵינוּ

Ilu karah lanu et hayam, v’lo he’evairanu bitocho becheravah, dayenu.

אִלוּ הֶעֱבֵירָנוּ בְּתוֹכוֹ בֶּחָרָבָה, וְלֹא שְׁקַע צָרֵנוּ בְּתוֹכוֹ, דַּיֵינוּ

Ilu he’evairanu bitocho becheravah, v’lo shikah tzareinu b’tocho, dayenu.

אִלוּ שִׁקַע צָרֵנוּ בְּתוֹכוֹ, וְלֹא סִפֵּק צָרְכֵּנוּ בּמִדְבָּר אַרְבָּעִים שָׁנָה, דַּיֵינוּ

Ilu shikah tzareinu b’tocho, v’lo sifek tzarchainu bamidbar arba’im shana, dayneu.

אִלוּ סִפֵּק צָרְכֵּנוּ בּמִדְבָּר אַרְבָּעִים שָׁנָה, וְלֹא הֶאֱכִילָנוּ אֶת הַמָּן, דַּיֵינוּ

Ilu sipek tzarchainu bamidbar arba’im shana, v’lo he’echilanu et haman, dayenu.

אִלוּ הֶאֱכִילָנוּ אֶת הַמָּן, וְלֹא נָתַן לָנוּ אֶת הַשַׁבָּת, דַּיֵינוּ

Ilu he’echilanu et haman, v’lo natan lanu et hashabbat, dayenu.

אִלוּ נָתַן לָנוּ אֶת הַשַׁבָּת, וְלֹא קֵרְבָנוּ לִפְנֵי הַר סִינַי, דַּיֵינוּ

Ilu natan lanu et hashabbat, v’lo karvanu lifnei har Sinai, dayenu.

אִלוּ קֵרְבָנוּ לִפְנֵי הַר סִינַי, וְלֹא נַָתַן לָנוּ אֶת הַתּוֹרָה, דַּיֵינוּ

Ilu karvanu lifnei har Sinai, v’lo natan lanu et hatorah, dayenu.

אִלוּ נַָתַן לָנוּ אֶת הַתּוֹרָה, וְלֹא הִכְנִיסָנוּ לְאֶרֶץ יִשְׂרָאֵל, דַּיֵינוּ

Ilu natan lanu et hatorah, v’lo hichnisanu l’eretz Yisrael, dayenu.

אִלוּ הִכְנִיסָנוּ לְאֶרֶץ יִשְׂרָאֵל, וְלֹא בָנָה לָנוּ אֶת בֵּית הַבְּחִירָה, דַּיֵינוּ

Ilu hicnisanu l’eretz Yisrael, v’lo vana lanu et bait habchirah, dayenu.

-- Cup #2 & Dayenu
Three of the Symbols of Passover


Rabban Gamliel returns us to the foods before us, the relics of the first Seder, storehouses of memory from our suffering and our redemption. He taught that all those who do not speak of three symbols on Pesach had not fulfilled their obligation to tell the story. These are: Pesach, Matzah, and Marror.

Participant (Raise the shank bone):

The Pesach , or Pascal Lamb, which our ancestors ate during the time the Great Temple stood in Jerusalem; For what reason was it eaten?

They ate the Pesah because the holy one, Blessed be He, “passed over” the houses of our ancestors in Mitzrayim , as it is written in the Torah: “And You shall say, ‘It is the Passover offering for Adonai, who passed over the houses of the Israelites saving us in Mitzrayim but struck the houses of the Egyptians on the Israelites final night in Mitzrayim . A roasted shankbone,, called a zeroah, is used to represent the Pesach on the Seder Plate. Zeroah also means arm; some say it symbolizes the outstretched arm of God.

Participant (Raise the matzah):

Why do we eat Matzah ?

Matzah commemorates the bread which our forefathers were compelled to eat during their hasty departure from Mitzrayim. There was insufficient time for the dough of our ancestors to rise when the holy one, Blessed be He, was revealed to us and redeemed us. As it is written in the Torah, “And they baked the dough which they brought forth out of Mitzrayim into matzah, cakes of unleavened bread, which had not risen, for having been driven out of Mitzrayim they could not tarry, and they had made no provisions for themselves.”

We began our Seder with three matzot. We use three matzot to represent the three religious groupings of the Jewish people: Kohen, Levi and Yisroayl. They are placed together to indicate the unity of the Jewish people. In unity, we find our strength and power to survive.

Participant (Raise the maror):

Why do we eat Maror , bitter herbs?

We eat Maror because the Egyptians embittered the lives of our ancestors in Mitzrayim. As the Torah states, “And they embittered their lives with servitude, with mortar and bricks without straw, with every form of slavery in the field and with great torment.” It is interesting to note that the Hebrew word for embittered is mei-re-ru, the root of the word maror.

In addition to the Maror , the Seder Plate contains a second bitter herb, Chazeret (raise the Chazeret ), that will soon be used to in korech, or the Hillel Sandwich, which consists of matzah and a bitter herb and sometimes charossett.


While not discussed by Rabban Gamliel, we will also speak of the remaining two symbols on our Seder Plate: the Roasted Egg and the Charossett.

(Raise Roasted Egg.)  The Roasted Egg reminds us of the seconded offering brought to the Temple on Passover. It was known as the "Festival Offering," for it was brought on each of the three festivals - Pesach, Shavuot, and Sukkot.  The roundness of the egg also represents the cycle of life — even in the most painful of times, there is always hope for a new beginning. In our family, it is traditional to eat a hard-boiled egg as an appetizer before our main meal.

(Raise the Charossett) This is the Charosett; it is made to resemble the mortar with which our forefathers made bricks for the building of Egyptian cities.

-- Cup #2 & Dayenu

בְּכָל דּוֹר וָדוֹר חַיָב אָדָם לִרְאוֹת אֶת עַצְמוֹ כְּאִלוּ הוּא יֶָָצֶָא מִמִּצְרַָים , שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וְהִגַּדְתָּ לְבִנְךָ בַּיוֹם הַהוּא לֵאמֹר, בַּעֲבוּר זֶה עָשָׂה יי לִי בְּצֵאתִי מִמִּצְרַים . לֹא אֶת אֲבוֹתֵינוּ בִּלְבָד גָּאַל הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא, אֶלָּא אַף אוֹתָנוּ גָּאַל עִמָּהֶם, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וְאוֹתָנוּ הוֹצִיא מִשָׁם , לְמַעַן הָבִיא אֹתָנוּ, לָתֶת לָנוּ אֶת הָאָרֶץ אֲשֶׁר נִשָׁבַּע לַאֲבֹתֵנוּ.

B’chol dor vador chayav adam lirot et atzmo k’ilu hu yatza mimitzrayim, shene’emar: v’higadta l’vincha bayom hahu leimor, ba’avur zeh asah Adonai li b’tzeiti mimitzrayim. Lo et avoteinu bilvad ga’al hakadosh baruch hu, ela af otanu ga’al imahem, shene’emar: v’otanu hotzi misham, l’ma’an havi otanu, latet lanu et ha’aretz asher nishba la’avoteinu.


In every generation every one of us is obligated to regard ourselves as though we had gone through Mitzrayim. As it is said, "And you shall tell your child in that day, saying these words, "Because of what the Eternal did for me in bringing me out of Mitzrayim. " Thus, it was not our ancestors alone whom the Holy One, blessed be He, redeemed, but He also redeemed us with them. As it is said, "He brought us forth from there in order to bring us in, that He might give us the land which He swore unto our ancestors."


Therefore we are obligated, to thank, sing the Hallel, praise, glorify, exalt, honor, bless, elevate and raise our voices for joy to the Holy One, Blessed be He, Who performed all these miracles for our ancestors and for us! He brought us from human bondage to freedom, from sorrow to joy, from a time of mourning to a festive day, from deep darkness to great light and from slavery to redemption! In Your presence we renew our singing as in ancient days: Hallel-lu-yah Sing Hallel to G-d!


-- Cup #2 & Dayenu
Source : Art work: Baruch Nachshon

הַלְלוּיָהּ הַלְלוּ עַבְדֵי יי, הַלְלוּ אֶת שֵׁם יי: יְהִי שֵׁם יי מְבֹרָךְ מֵעַתָּה וְִעַד עוֹלָם. מִמִּזְרַח שֶׁמֶשׁ עַד מְבוֹאוֹ מְהֻלָּל שֵׁם יי: רָם עַל כָּל גּוֹיִם יי, עַל הַשָּׁמַיִם כְּבוֹדוֹ. מִי כַּיי אֱלֹהֵינוּ הַמַּגְבִּיהִי לָשָׁבֶת: הַמַּשְׁפִּילִי לִרְאוֹת בַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ: מְקִימִי מֵעָפָר דָּל, מֵאַשְׁפֹּת יָרִים אֶבְיוֹן: לְהוֹשִׁיבִי עִם נְדִיבִים, עִם נְדִיבֵי עַמּוֹ: מוֹשִׁיבִי עֲקֶרֶת הַבַּיִת, אֵם הַבָּנִים שִׂמְחָה. הַלְלוּיָהּ:

בְּצֵאת יִשְׂרָאֵל מִמִמִּרַָים , בֵּית יַעֲקֹב מֵעַם לֹעֵז, הָיְתָה יְהוּדָּה לְקָדְשׁוֹ, יִשְׂרָאֵל מַמְשְׁלוֹתָיו. הַיָּם רָאָה וַיַָּנֹס, הַיַרְדֵּן יִסֹּב לְאָחוֹר. הֶהָרִים רָקְדוּ כְאֵילִים, גְּבַָעוֹת - כִּבְנֵי צֹאן. מַה לְּךָ הַיָּם כִּי תָנוּס, הַיַּרְדֵן - תִּסֹּב לְאָחוֹר, הֶהָרִים - תִּרְקְדוּ כְאֵילִים, גְּבַָעוֹת - כִּבְנֵי צֹאן. מִלְּפְנֵי אָדוֹן חוּלִי אָרֶץ, מִלְּפְנֵי אֱלוֹהַ יַעֲקֹב. הַהֹפְכִי הַצּוּר אֲגַם מָיִם, חַלָּמִיש - לְמַעְיְנוֹ מָיִם


Halleluyah hal’lu avdei Adonai, hal’lu et sheim Adonai. Y’hi sheim Adonai m’vorach mei’atah v’ad olam. Mimizrach shemesh ad m’vo’o m’hulal sheim Adonai. Ram al kol goyim Adonai, al hashamayim k’vodo. Mi k’Adonai Eloheinu hamagbihi lashavet, hamashpili lirot bashamayim uva’aretz? M’kimi mei’afar dal, mei’ashpot yarim evyon, l’hoshivi im nidivim, im nidivei amo. Moshivi akeret habayit, eim habanim s’meichah. Halleluyah.

B’tzeit Yisrael mimitzrayim, beit Ya’akov mei’am lo’eiz, haytah yihudah likodsho, Yisrael mamshilotav. Hayam ra’ah vayanos, hayardein yisov l’achor. Heharim rakedu che’eilim, giva’ot – kivnei tzon. Mah l’cha hayam ki tanus, hayardein – tisov l’achor, heharim tirkedu che’eilim, givaot – kivnei tzon. Milifnei adon chuli aretz, milifnei eloha Ya’akov. Hahofchi hatzur agam mayim, chalamish – lemayno mayim.

Leader: We will read responsively. Hallelujah! Praise, you servants of the Lord, Praise the name of the Lord

Assembled: Blessed be the name of the Lord from this time forth and forever.

Leader: From the rising of the sun unto the going down thereof, the Lord's name is to be praised.

Assembled: TheLord is high above all nations, His glory is above the heavens.

Leader: Who is like unto the Lord, our G-d, that is enthroned on high,

Assembled: That lookest down low upon heaven and upon Earth?

Leader: Who raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth up the needy out of the dung hill;

Assembled: That He may set him with princes, even with the princes of His people.

Leader: Who makes the barren woman to dwell in her house as a joyful mother. Hallelujah!

Assembled: When Israel came forth out of Mitzrayim, the House of Jacob from a people of a strange language;

Leader: Judah became His sanctuary, Israel His dominion.

Assembled: The sea beheld it and fled; the Jordan turned backward.

Leader: The mountains skipped like rams, the hills, like young sheep.

Assembled: What aileth thee, O thou sea, that thou fleest? Thou Jordan, that thou turnest backward?

Leader: Ye mountains, that skip like rams; ye hills, like young sheep?

Assembled: Tremble, though earth, at the presence of the Lord, at the presence of the G-d of Jacob;

Leader: Who turned the rock into a pool of water, the flint into a fountain of waters.

-- Cup #2 & Dayenu
The Second Cup: I Will Deliver You


With this second cup of wine we remember the second promise G-d made to our people: "I will deliver you from slavery." We learn that G-d wants people to be free. The second cup of wine also symbolizes intellectual freedom and redemption. Closed minds lead to misunderstandings and human suffering. We need to open our minds to new ideas and try to understand the beliefs of others. Knowledge and understanding will lead to greater freedom for all people.

DIRECTIONS; We raise our second cups of wine and recite together in Hebrew and then in English:

בָּרוּךְ אתה יי אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ העוֹלָם, אֲשֶׁר גְּאָלָנוּ וְגָּאַל אֶת אֲבוֹתֵינוּ מִמִּצְרַים , וְהִגִּיעָנוּ לַלַּיְלָה הַזֶּה לֶאֱכָל בּוֹ מַצָּה וּמָרוֹר. כֵּן יי אֱלֹהֵינוּ וֵאלֹהֵי אֲבוֹתֵינוּ יַגִּיעֵנוּ לְמוֹעֲדִים וְלִרְגָלִים אֲחֵרִים הַבָּאִים לִקְרָאתֵנוּ לְשָׁלוֹם, שְׂמֵחִים בְּבִנְיַן עִירֶךָ וְשָׂשִׂים בַּעֲבוֹדָתֶךָ. וְנֹאכַל שָׁם מִן הַזְּבָחִים וּמִן הַפְּסָחִים אֲשֶׁר יַגִּיעַ דָּמָם עַל קִיר מִזְבַּחֲךָ לְרָצוֹן, וְנוֹדֶה לְךָ שֶׁיר חָדָש עַל גְּאֻלָּתֵנוּ ועַל פְּדוּת נַפְשֵׁנוּ. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יי גָּאַל יִשְׂרָאֵל

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יי אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם בּוֹרֵא פְּרִי הַגָפֶן.


Baruch atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech ha’olam, asher g’alanu v’ga’al et avoteinu mimitzrayim, v’higianu lalaylah hazeh le’echol bo matzah umaror. Kein Adonai Eloheinu vEilohei avoteinu yagi’einu l’mo’adim v’lirgalim acheirim haba’im likrateinu l’shalom, s’meichim b’vinyan irecha v’sasim ba’avodatecha. V’nochal sham min hazvachim umin hapsachim asher yagia damam al kir mizbachacha l’ratzon, v’nodeh l’cha shir chadash al g’ulateinu v’al p’dut nafsheinu. Baruch Atah Adonai, ga’al Yisrael.

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech haolam, borei p’ri hagafen.

In Unison:

Praised are you, Lord, our G-d, sovereign of the universe, who has redeemed us and our ancestors from Mitzrayim and enabled us to reach this night that we may eat matzah and marror. Lord our God and God of our fathers, enable us also to reach the forthcoming holidays and festivals in peace, rejoicing in the rebuilding of Zion your city, and joyful at your service. There we shall eat of the offerings and Passover sacrifices which will be acceptably placed upon your altar. We shall sing a new hymn of praise to you for our redemption and for our liberation. Praised are you, Adonai, who has redeemed Israel.

Blessed art Thou, Lord, our God, King of the universe, who has created the fruit of the vine.

(Drink your entire cup of wine, remembering that it is not full because of the wine we poured off earlier to remember others' sorrows)

Source : Rabbi Menachem Creditor, Congregation Netivot Shalom, Berkeley, CA


We will now transition from the formal telling of the Passover story to the celebratory meal. Once again, we will wash our hands but this time the act of washing is different. This time it is a deeper step that is accompanied by a blessing. In this moment we feel our People's story more deeply having just retold it during Maggid. Now, having re-experienced the miracles of our ancestors’ journey from degradation to dignity, we will raise our hands in holiness, remembering once again that our liberation is bound up in everyone else's. Each step we take together with others towards liberation is blessing.  

When the Holy Temple stood in Jerusalem, the Kohanim, priests, poured the waters of life over their hands and without a word, they silently took hold of their piece of freedom and broke the stillness only with the praise of G-d we know as the Motzi.

DIRECTIONS : Using a cup or pitcher, the leader should pour fresh water over each hand, either on behalf of the Seder participants, or in the company of them. As the washers raise their hands to dry them, we recite together:

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יי אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, אֲשֶׁר קִדְשָׁנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו וְצִוָּנוּ עַל נְטִילַת יָדַיִם 

Baruch atah Adonai Eloheinu melech ha-olam, asher kid'shanu b'mitzvotav, v'tzivanu al n'tilat yadayim.

Blessed art thou, Lord our G-d, King of the Universe, who has sanctified us with thy commandments and commanded us to wash the hands.

DIRECTIONS : We remain silent until the moment of saying the motzi.

Source :
Motzi Matzah

DIRECTIONS: The Leader holds the 2 unbroken matzot and the broken middle one and we recite the following 2 blessings together:

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יי אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם הַמּוֹצִיא לֶחֶם מִן הָאָרֶץ.

Baruch atah Adonai, Eloheinu melech ha-olam, hamotzi lechem min ha-aretz.

Blessed art thou, Lord our G-d, King of the universe, who provides sustenance from the earth.

Before eating the matzah, put the bottom matzah back in its place and continue, reciting the following blessing while holding only the top and middle piece of matzah.

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יי אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו וְצִוָּנוּ עַל אֲכִילַת מַצָּה.

Baruch atah Adonai, Eloheinu melech ha-olam, asher kid'shanu b'mitzvotav v'tzivanu al achilat matzah.

Blessed art Thou, Lord our G-d, Ruler of the universe, who has taught us the way of holiness through commandments, commanding us to eat matzah.

DIRECTIONS: Break the top and middle matzot into pieces and distribute them everyone at the table to eat a while reclining to the left.



We are about to eat the Maror, one of the bitter herbs, dipped into charossett. The bitter herb remind us of how the Egyptians embittered the lives of the Israelites in servitude. When we eat the bitter herbs we share in the bitterness of oppression and must remember that slavery still exists all over the world. The Charossett not only reminds us of the mortar our ancestors used when they were slaves, but its sweet taste also reminds us of the sweetness of freedom that can only be known fully after one has suffered. Most of us have suffered the bitterness of pain, disappointment and loss in our lives. May we use these moments to help us to be more sensitive to the bitterness in others' lives and to develop awareness of our own strengths during difficult times, thereby tempering the bitterness.

DIRECTIONS: Each participant takes a forkful of horseradish and dips it into charossett without obliterating the taste of the horseradish's bitterness and we recite the following blessing:

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יי אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, אֲשֶׁר קִדְּשָנוּ בְּמִצְוֹתָיו וְצִוָּנוּ עַל אֲכִילַת מָרוֹר

Baruch atah Adonai Eloheinu melech ha-olam, asher kid'shanu b'mitzvotav v'tzivanu al achilat maror.

Blessed art Thou, Lord our God, King of the universe, who has taught us the way of holiness through commandments, commanding us to eat the bitter herb.

Source :


Hillel, the great sage of the first century BCE, lived at the time of the Holy Temple when eating the Passover sacrifice was a part of the Passover obligations. Instead of eating the three foods separately ( matzah, bitter herbs, and the meat from the sacrifice), Hillel made a sandwich combining the three, and ate it while reclining. Hillel's positive approach to all hardships in life is symbolized in this sandwich. Hillel viewed the bitter parts of his life, particularly the hardships of the poverty that G‑d bestowed  upon him, positively. So, while his life appeared difficult, he was able to understand that it was G‑d’s will and ultimately for a good reason. Therefore he placed the bitterness of the bitter herbs inside the freedom of matzah and ate it while reclining. To commemorate Hillel's sandwich, korech,  Jews do the same today, eating the Hillel sandwich (minus the meat) while reclining.


Each person is given a small piece of the bottom matzah and places a piece of chazeret upon it and say:

:זֵכֶר לְמִקְדָּשׁ כְּהִלֵּל

 כֵּן עָשָׂה הִלֵּל בִּזְמַן שבֵּית הַמִּקְדָּשׁ הָיָה קַיָים: הָיָה כּוֹרֵךְ פּסח מַצָּה וּמָרוֹר וְאוֹכֵל בְּיַחַד, לְקַיֵים מַה שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: עַל מַצּוֹת וּמְרֹרִים יֹאכְלֻהוּ

Zeicher l'mikdash k'hileil. Kein asah hileil bizman shebeit hamikdash hayah kayam. Hayah koreich pesach, matzah, u-maror v'ocheil b'yachad. L'kayeim mah shene-emar: Al matzot um'rorim yochlu-hu:

Source : Rabbi Harold Schulweis


Rabbinic scholars sensed the oddity of reciting a motzi over a broken piece of unleavened bread; they wondered why the middle matzah and not the other two were broken, and why it was broken into two uneven parts with the larger part saved for the afikoman. Their explanations are largely legal, based upon the position of the Rambam, the Rif, and other sages. For others, the “stealing” or hiding of the afikoman was designed to keep the children awake with play.

In the outline of the seder ritual, the division of the middle matzah–yahatz–takes place early, before the great declaration, “This is the bread of afflic­tion.” The eating of the retrieved matzah comes after ransoming it from the children at the end of the seder. The ritual of eating the afikoman is called tzafun, which means “hidden.” The afikoman is eaten in silence, without benediction, before mid­night. After the afikoman, no food or drink is to be taken except for the final two cups of wine.


Brokenness is a symbol of incompletion. Life is not whole. The Passover itself is not complete. The Passover we celebrate deals with the past redemption of our people from the bondage in Egypt. That redemption heartens us because through its recollection we know that our hope for future redemption is not fantasy. It happened once and to our whole peo­ple. A small slave people witnessed the power of a supreme divine agency to snap the heavy chains around our hands, and to break the yoke upon our necks. At the Seder we relate the testimony of this act.

But it is toward the Passover of the Future that our memories are directed. The redemption is not over. There is still fear and poverty and sickness. There is a trembling on earth. Around us are the plagues of pollution, and images of fiery nuclear explosions in the clouds, not like the cloud of glory and the pillar of fire that led our ancestors through the wilderness. The broken matzah speaks to our times, shakes us by the shoulders and shouts into our hearts, “Do not bury your spirit in his­tory. Do not think it is over, complete, and you have nothing to do but to wait for the Messiah to come, to pray, to believe.”


The history of our liberation is not for the sake of gloating over the past but for confirmation of our hopes. Even as we retrieve the past, the future is held before us. We begin the story of our past af­fliction with an appeal for present help and with an eye set upon the future. Three time dimensions are mentioned in one opening paragraph. “This is the bread of af­fliction that our ancestors ate in the land of Egypt. All who are hungry, let them come and eat ; all who are in need come in and celebrate the Passo­ver. Now we are here, next year in Israel. ”

The silence before the breaking of the middle mat­zah and before the eating of the afikoman suggests that something secret is expressed in the ceremony. We know that the idea of a Messianic era was con­sidered a threat to regimes for whom there was no messiah but the Emperor, no redeemer but Rome. To dream of an era of peace, an end to slavery, is a revolutionary critique of the status quo. Jews dis­agreed among themselves as to who the Messiah will be or when the Messiah will come, but one thing they all knew. This was not the Messiah, now was not the fulfillment of the Messianic era. In silence, without benediction–for one does not bless that which has not yet occurred–they broke the matzah hidden between the two whole ones, anticipated its recovery, and eating it affirmed their belief in the Passover of the Future.

The hidden matzah is the greater part. The promise of the future is greater than the achievements of the past. It is no game to keep the child awake. It is the vision of messianic times to­ward which we live and struggle. Rouse the child from his slumber. Without his find the seder can­not be completed.

DIRECTIONS: After the Afikoman is successfully ransomed back, it is distributed amongst all present and eaten in silence, after which no food may be eaten during the evening.


DIRECTIONS: Pour the third cup of wine and recite Birkat Hamazon (Blessing after the Meal). We include the words in parentheses when 10 Jewish adults are present.

Leader: We will now sing the Blessings after the Meal in Hebrew, to thank G-d for all of our food. The transliteration may be found on page 65.

שִׁיר הַמַּעֲלוֹת:

בְּשׁוּב יהוה אֶת־שִׁיבַת צִיּוֹן הָיִ֫ינוּ כְּחֹלְמִים. אָז יִמָּלֵא שְׂחוֹק פִּינוּ וּלְשׁוֹנֵנוּ רִנָּה, אָז יֹאמְרוּ בַגּוֹיִם, הִגְדִּיל יְיָ לַעֲשׂוֹת עִם אֵלֶּה. הִגְדִּיל יְיָ לַעֲשׂוֹת עִמָּנוּ, הָיִינוּ שְׂמֵחִים. שׁוּבָה יְיָ אֶת שְׁבִיתֵנוּ, כַּאֲפִיקִים בַּנֶּגֶב. הַזֹּרְעִים בְּדִמְעָה בְּרִנָּה יִקְצֹרוּ. הָלוֹךְ יֵלֵךְ וּבָכֹה נֹשֵׂא מֶשֶׁךְ הַזָּרַע, בֹּא יָבֹא בְרִנָּה נֹשֵׂא אֲלֻמֹּתָיו.

תְּהִלַּת יְיָ יְדַבֶּר פִּי, וִיבָרֵךְ כָּל בָּשָׂר שֵׁם קָדְשׁוֹ לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד. וַאֲנַחְנוּ נְבָרֵךְ יָהּ מֵעַתָּה וְעַד עוֹלָם הַלְלוּיָהּ. הוֹדוּ לַייָ כִּי טוֹב כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. מִי יְמַלֵּל גְּבוּרוֹת יְיָ יַשְׁמִיעַ כָּל תְּהִלָּתוֹ

:רַבּוֹתַי נְבָרֵךְ

יְהִי שֵׁם יְיָ מְבֹרָךְ מֵעַתָּה וְעַד עוֹלָם

יְהִי שֵׁם יְיָ מְבֹרָךְ מֵעַתָּה וְעַד עוֹלָם. בִּרְשׁוּת מָרָנָן וְרַבָּנָן וְרַבּוֹתַי נְבָרֵך (אֱלֹהֵינוּ) שֶׁאָכַלְנוּ מִשֶּׁלוֹ

בָּרוּךְ (אֱלֹהֵינוּ) שֶׁאָכַלְנוּ מִשֶּׁלוֹ וּבְטוּבוֹ חָיִּינוּ

בָּרוּךְ (אֱלֹהֵינוּ) שֶׁאָכַלְנוּ מִשֶּׁלוֹ וּבְטוּבוֹ חָיִּינוּ

בָּרוּךְ הוּא וּבָרוּך שְׁמוֹ

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, הַזָּן אֶת הָעוֹלָם כֻּלּוֹ בְּטוּבוֹ בְּחֵן בְּחֶסֶד וּבְרַחֲמִים הוּא נוֹתֵן לֶחֶם לְכָל בָּשָׂר, כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. וּבְטוּבוֹ הַגָּדוֹל תָּמִיד לֹא

חָסַר. לָנוּ וְאַל יֶחְסַר לָנוּ מָזוֹן לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד. בַּעֲבוּר שְׁמוֹ הַגָּדוֹל כִּי הוּא אֵל זָן וּמְפַרְנֵס לַכֹּל וּמֵטִיב לַכֹּל וּמֵכִין מָזוֹן לְכָל בְּרִיּוֹתָיו אֲשֶׁר בָּרָא. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, הַזָּן אֶת הַכֹּל

נוֹדֶה לְךָ יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ עַל שֶׁהִנְחַלְתָּ לַאֲבוֹתֵינוּ אֶרֶץ חֶמְדָּה טוֹבָה וּרְחָבָה, וְעַל שֶׁהוֹצֵאתָנוּ יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם וּפְדִיתָנוּ מִבֵּית עֲבָדִים, וְעַל בְּרִיתְךָ שֶׁחָתַמְתָּ בִּבְשָׂרֵנוּ, וְעַל תּוֹרָתְךָ שֶׁלִמַּדְתָּנוּ, וְעַל חֻקֶּיךָ שֶׁהוֹדַעְתָּנוּ, וְעַל חַיִּים חֵן וָחֶסֶד שֶׁחוֹנַנְתָּנוּ, וְעַל אֲכִילַת מָזוֹן שָׁאַתָּה זָן וּמְפַרְנֵס אוֹתָנוּ תָּמִיד בְּכָל יוֹם וּבְכָל עֵת וּבְכָל שָׁעָה

וְעַל הַכֹּל יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ אֲנַחְנוּ מוֹדִים לָךְ וּמְבָרְכִים אוֹתָךְ יִתְבָּרַךְ שִׁמְךָ בְּפִי כָל חַי תָּמִיד לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד. כַּכָּתוּב, וְאָכַלְתָּ וְשָׂבָעְתָּ וּבֵרַכְתָּ אֶת יְיָ אֱלֹהֶיךָ עַל הָאָרֶץ הַטֹּבָה אֲשֶׁר נָתַן לָךְ. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, עַל הָאָרֶץ וְעַל הַמָּזוֹן

רַחֶם נָא יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ עַל יִשְׂרָאֵל עַמֶּךָ וְעַל יְרוּשָׁלַיִם עִירֶךָ וְעַל צִיּוֹן מִשְׁכַּן כְּבוֹדֶךָ וְעַל מַלְכוּת בֵּית דָּוִד מְשִׁיחֶךָ וְעַל הַבַּיִת הַגָּדוֹל וְהַקָּדוֹשׁ שֶׁנִּקְרָא שִׁמְךָ עָלָיו. אֱלֹהֵינוּ אָבִינוּ רְעֵנוּ זוּנֵנוּ פַּרְנְסֵנוּ וְכַלְכְּלֵנוּ וְהַרְוִיחֵנוּ וְהַרְוַח לָנוּ יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ מְהֵרָה מִכָּל צָרוֹתֵינוּ. וְנָא אַל תַּצְרִיכֵנוּ יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ לֹא לִידֵי מַתְּנַת בָּשָׂר וָדָם וְלֹא לִידֵי הַלְוָאָתָם, כִּי אִם לְיָדְךָ הַמְּלֵאָה הַפְּתוּחָה הַקְּדוֹשָׁה וְהָרְחָבָה, שֶׁלּא נֵבוֹשׁ וְלֹא נִכָּלֵם לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד

On Shabbat:

רְצֵה וְהַחֲלִיצֵנוּ יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ בְּמִצְוֹתֶיךָ וּבְמִצְוַת יוֹם הַשְּׁבִיעִי הַשַׁבָּת הַגָּדוֹל וְהַקָדוֹשׂ הַזֶּה. כִּי יוֹם זֶה גָּדוֹל וְקָדוֹשׁ הוּא לְפָנֶיךָ לִשְׁבָּת בּוֹ וְלָנוּחַ בּוֹ בְּאַהֲבָה כְּמִצְוַת רְצוֹנֶךָ. וּבִרְצוֹנְךָ הָנִיחַ לָנוּ יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁלֹּא תְהֵא צָרָה וְיָגוֹן וַאֲנָחָה בְּיוֹם מְנוּחָתֵנוּ. וְהַרְאֵנוּ יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ בְּנֶחָמַת צִיּוֹן עִירֶךָ וּבְבִנְיַן יְרוּשָׁלַיִם עִיר קָדְשֶׁךָ כִּי אַתָּה הוּא בַּעַל הַיְשׁוּעוֹת וּבַעַל הַנֶּחָמוֹת


וֵאלֹהֵי אֲבוֹתֵינוּ, יַעֲלֶה וְיָבֹא וְיַגִּיעַ וְיֵרָאֶה וְיֵרָצֶה וְיִשָּׁמַע וְיִפָּקֵד וְיִזָּכֵר זִכְרוֹנֵנוּ וּפִקְדּוֹנֵנוּ, וְזִכְרוֹן אֲבוֹתֵינוּ, וְזִכְרוֹן מָשִׁיחַ בֶּן דָּוִד עַבְדֶּךָ ,וְזִכְרוֹן יְרוּשָׁלַיִם עִיר קָדְשֶׁךָ, וְזִכְרוֹן כָּל עַמְּךָ בֵּית יִשְׂרָאֵל לְפָנֶיךָ, לִפְלֵטָה לְטוֹבָה לְחֵן וּלְחֶסֶד וּלְרַחֲמִים, לְחַיִּים וּלְשָׁלוֹם בְּיוֹם חַג הַמַּצּוֹת הַזֶּה. זָכְרֵנוּ יְיָ אֱלֹהֵינוּ בּוֹ לְטוֹבָה וּפָּקְדֵנוּ בוֹ לִבְרָכָה וְהוֹשִׁיעֵנוּ בוֹ לְחַיִּים. וּבִדְבַר יְשׁוּעָה וְרַחֲמִים חוּס וְחָנֵּנוּ וְרַחֵם עָלֵינוּ וְהוֹשִׁיעֵנוּ, כִּי אֵלֶיךָ עֵינֵינוּ, כִּי אֵל מֶלֶךְ חַנּוּן וְרַחוּם אָתָּה

וּבְנֵה יְרוּשָׁלַיִם עִיר הַקֹּדֶשׁ בִּמְהֵרָה בְיָמֵינוּ. בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, בּוֹנֵה בְרַחֲמָיו יְרוּשָׁלָיִם. אָמֵן

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, הָאֵל אָבִינוּ מַלְכֵּנוּ אַדִּירֵנוּ בּוֹרְאֵנוּ גֹּאֲלֵנוּ יוֹצְרֵנוּ קְדוֹשֵׁנוּ קְדוֹשׁ יַעֲקֹב, רוֹעֵנוּ רוֹעֵה יִשְׂרָאֵל הַמֶּלֶךְ הַטּוֹב וְהַמֵּטִיב לַכֹּל שֶׁבְּכָל יוֹם וָיוֹם הוּא הֵטִיב הוּא מֵטִיב הוּא יֵיטִיב לָנוּ. הוּא גְמָלָנוּ הוּא גוֹמְלֵנוּ הוּא יִגְמְלֵנוּ לָעַד לְחֵן וּלְחֶסֶד וּלְרַחֲמִים וּלְרֶוַח הַצָּלָה וְהַצְלָחָה בְּרָכָה וִישׁוּעָה נֶחָמָה פַּרְנָסָה וְכַלְכָּלָה וְרַחֲמִים וְחַיִּים וְשָׁלוֹם וְכָל טוֹב, וּמִכָּל טוּב לְעוֹלָם אַל יְחַסְּרֵנוּ

הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יִמְלֹךְ עָלֵינוּ לְעוֹלָם וָעֶד. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יִתְבָּרַךְ בַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יִשְׁתַּבַּח לְדוֹר דּוֹרִים וְיִתְפָּאַר בָּנוּ לָעַד וּלְנֵצַח נְצָחִים וְיִתְהַדַּר בָּנוּ לָעַד וּלְעוֹלְמֵי עוֹלָמִים. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יְפַרְנְסֵנוּ בְּכָבוֹד. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יִשְׁבּר עֻלֵנוּ מֵעַל צַוָּארֵנוּ וְהוּא יוֹלִיכֵנוּ קוֹמְמִיּוּת לְאַרְצֵנוּ. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יִשְׁלַח לָנוּ בְּרָכָה מְרֻבָּה בַּבַּיִת הַזֶּה וְעַל שֻׁלְחָן זֶה שֶׁאָכַלְנוּ עָלָיו. הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יִשְׁלַח לָנוּ אֶת אֵלִיָּהוּ הַנָּבִיא זָכוּר לַטּוֹב וִיבַשֶּׂר לָנוּ בְּשׂוֹרוֹת טוֹבוֹת יְשׁוּעוֹת וְנֶחָמוֹת

הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יְבָרֵךְ אֶת

אָבִי מוֹרִי (בַּעַל הַבַּיִת הַזֶּה) וְאֶת אִמִּי מוֹרָתִי (בַּעֲלַת הַבַּיִת הַזֶּה), אוֹתָם וְאֶת בֵּיתָם וְאֶת זַרְעָם וְאֶת כָּל אֲשֶׁר לָהֶם (for one's parents)

אוֹתִי (וְאֶת אִשְׁתִּי/בַּעֲלִי/זַרְעִי וְאֶת) כָּל אֲשֶׁר לִי (for one's family)

בַּעַל הַבַּיִת הַזֶּה וְאֶת בַּעֲלַת הַבַּיִת הַזֶּה, אוֹתָם וְאֶת בֵּיתָם וְאֶת זַרְעָם וְאֶת כָּל אֲשֶׁר לָהֶם (for one's hosts)

וְאֶת כָּל הַמְסֻבִּין כַּאן (for all others)

אוֹתָנוּ וְאֶת כָּל אֲשֶׁר לָנוּ, כְּמוֹ שֶׁנִּתְבָּרְכוּ אֲבוֹתֵינוּ אַבְרָהָם יִצְחָק וְיַעֲקֹב בַּכֹּל מִכֹּל כֹּל, כֵּן יְבָרֵךְ אוֹתָנוּ כֻּלָּנוּ יַחַד בִּבְרָכָה שְׁלֵמָה, וְנֹאמַר אָמֵן

בַּמָּרוֹם יְלַמְּדוּ עֲלֵיהֶם וְעָלֵינוּ זְכוּת שֶׁתְּהֵא לְמִשְׁמֶרֶת שָׁלוֹם. וְנִשָּׂא בְרָכָה מֵאֵת יְיָ וּצְדָקָה מֵאֱלֹהֵי יִשְׁעֵנוּ. וְנִמְצָא חֵן וְשֵׂכֶל טוֹב בְּעֵינֵי אֱלֹהִים וְאָדָם

הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יַנְחִילֵנוּ יוֹם שֶׁכֻּלוֹ שַׁבָּת וּמְנוּחָה לְחַיֵּי הָעוֹלָמִים

:On Shabbat

הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יַנְחִילֵנוּ יוֹם שֶׁכֻּלוֹ טוֹב

הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יְבָרֵךְ אֶת מְדִנַת יִשְׂרָאֵל

הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יְבָרֵךְ אֶת חַיָּלֵי צְבָא הֲגַנָּה לְיִשְׂרָאֵל, וְיָגֵן עֲלֵיהֶם

הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יְבָרֵךְ אֶת מְדִנַת הַזאֹתּ, וְאֶת חַיָּלֶיהָ, וְיָגֵן עֲלֵיהֶם

הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יַשְׁכְּין שָׁלוֹם בֵּין בְּנֵי יַעֲקֹב וּבְנֵי יִשְׁמָעֵאל

הָרַחֲמָן הוּא יְזַכֵּנוּ לִימוֹת הַמָּשִׁיחַ וּלְחַיֵּי הָעוֹלָם הַבָּא

מִגְדּוֹל יְשׁוּעוֹת מַלְכּוֹ וְעֹשֶׂה חֶסֶד לִמְשִׁיחוֹ לְדָוִד וּלְזַרְעוֹ עַד עוֹלָם. עֹשֶׂה שָׁלוֹם בִּמְרוֹמָיו הוּא יַעֲשֶׂה שָׁלוֹם עָלֵינוּ וְעַל כָּל יִשְׂרָאֵל, וְאִמְרוּ אָמֵן

יְראוּ אֶת יְיָ קְדֹשָׁיו כִּי אֵין מַחְסוֹר לִירֵאָיו. כְּפִירִים רָשׁוּ וְרָעֵבוּ וְדֹרְשֵׁי יְיָ לֹא יַחְסְרוּ כָל טוֹב. הוֹדוּ לַייָ כִּי טוֹב כִּי לְעוֹלָם חַסְדּוֹ. פּוֹתֵחַ אֶת יָדֶךָ וּמַשְׂבִּיעַ לְכָל חַי רָצוֹן. בָּרוּךְ הַגֶּבֶר אֲשֶׁר יִבְטַח בַּייָ וְהָיָה יְיָ מִבְטַחוֹ. נַעַר הָיִיתִי גַם זָקַנְתִּי וְלֹא רָאִיתִי צַדִּיק נֶעֱזָב וְזַרְעוֹ מְבַקֶּשׁ לָחֶם. יְיָ עֹז לְעַמּוֹ יִתֵּן יְיָ יְבָרֵךְ אֶת עַמּוֹ בַשָּׁלוֹם.

The Blessing after the Meal concludes by drinking the Third Cup of wine, while reclining to the left.

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יי אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם בּוֹרֵא פְּרִי הַגָפֶן


AllShir Hama’alot, b’shuv Adonai et shee-vat Tzion, ha-yeenu k’chol meem. Az y’ma-lei s’chok pee-nu u’l-sho-nei-nu reena, az yo-m’ru va-goyim, heeg-deel Adonai la-asot eem eleh. Heeg-deel Adonai la-asot eemanu, ha-yee-nu s’mei-cheem. Shuva Adonai et sh’vee-tei-nu, ka-afee-keem ba-negev. Ha-zor-eem b’deem-ah b’reena yeek-tzo-ru. Ha-loch yei-lech u-va-cho no-sei me-shech hazara, bo yavo v’reena, no-sei alu-mo-tav.

Leader: Rabotai n’vareich.

ParticipantsY’hee sheim Adonai m’vo-rach mei-atah v’ad olam.

LeaderY’hee sheim Adonai m’vorach mei-atah v’ad olam. Beer-shut maranan v’rabanan v’rabotai, n’vareich (Eloheinu) she’achalnu mee-shelo.

ParticipantsBaruch (Eloheinu) she’achalnu mishelo uv’tuvo chayinu.

LeaderBaruch (Eloheinu) she’achalnu mishelo uv’tuvo chayinu.

All together: Baruch hu u-varuch sh’mo.

Baruch atah Adonai, Eloheinu melech ha-olam, hazan et ha-olam kulo b’tuvo, b’chein b’chesed uv-rachamim, hu noten lechem l’chol basar, ki l’olam chasdo, uv-tuvo hagadol, tamid lo chasar lanu v’al yechsar lanu mazon l’olam va’ed. Ba-avur sh’mo hagadol, ki hu Eil zan um’farneis lakol, u-meitiv lakol u-meichin mazon l’chol-b’riyotav asher bara. Baruch atah Adonai, hazan et hakol.

Baruch atah Adonai, Eloheinu melech ha-olam, hazan et ha-olam kulo b’tuvo, b’chein b’chesed uv-rachamim, hu noten lechem l’chol basar, ki l’olam chasdo, uv-tuvo hagadol, tamid lo chasar lanu v’al yechsar lanu mazon l’olam va’ed. Ba-avur sh’mo hagadol, ki hu Eil zan um’farneis lakol, u-meitiv lakol u-meichin mazon l’chol-b’riyotav asher bara. Baruch atah Adonai, hazan et hakol.

V’al hakol Adonai Eloheinu anachnu modim lach um’varchim otach, yitbarach shimcha b’fi kol chai tamid l’olam va’ed. Kakatuv, v’achalta v’savata uveirachta et Adonai Elohecha al ha’aretz hatova asher natan lach. Baruch atah Adonai al ha-aretz v’al hamazon.

Racheim na Adonai Eloheinu al Yisrael amecha v’al Y’rushalayim irecha v’al Tzion mishkan k’vodecha v’al malchut beit David m’shichecha v’al habayit hagadol v’hakadosh shenikra shimcha alav. Eloheinu Avinu r’einu zuneinu parn’seinu v’chalk’lenu v’harvicheinu v’harvach’lanu Adonai Eloheinu m’heira mikol-tzaroteinu. V’na al tatz’richeinu Adonai Eloheinu, lo lidei matnat basar vadam v’lo lidei hal’va’atam, ki im l’yad’cha ham’lei’a hap’tucha hak’dosha v’har’chava, shelo neivosh v’lo nikaleim l’olam va’ed.

On Shabbat:

R’tzei v’hachalitzeinu Adonai Eloheinu b’mitzvotecha, uv’mitvat yom hash’vi’i haShabbat hagadol v’hakadosh hazeh. Ki yom zeh gadol v’kadosh hu l’fanecha, lishbat bo v’lanuach bo b’ahavah k’miztvat r’tzonecha. U’birtzoncha hani’ach lanu Adonai Eloheinu, shelo t’hei tzara v’yagon va’anacha b’yom m’nuchateinu. V’har’einu Adonai Eloheinu b’nechamat Tzion irecha, uv’vinyan Yerushalayim ir kodshecha, ki atah hu ba’al ha’y’shuot u’va’al hanechamot.

Eloheinu v Eilohei avoteinu, yaleh v’yavo v’yagiah v’yeira’eh v’yeiratzeh v’yishma v’yipakeid, v’yizacheir zichroneinu ufikdoneinu, v’zichron avoteinu, v’zichron Mashiach ben David avdecha, v’zikhron Y’rushalayim ir kodshecha, v’zichron kol amkha beit Yisrael l’fanecha, lifleita l’tova l’chein ul’chesed ul’rachamim, l’chayim ul’shalom b’yom chag hamatzot hazeh zochreinu Adonai Eloheinu bo l’tova ufokdeinu vo livracha v’hoshieinu vo l’chayim. uv’dvar y’shuah v’rachamim chus v’chaneinu v’racheim aleinu v’hoshieinu ki eilecha eineinu, ki eil melech chanun vrachum ata.

Uv’nei Y’rushalayim ir hakodesh bimheira v’yameinu. Baruch atah Adonai, boneh v’rachamav Y’rushalayim. Amein.

Baruch atah Adonai, Eloheinu melech ha’olam, ha’Eil Avinu Malkeinu Adireinu Bor’einu Go’aleinu Yotz’reinu K’dosheinu k’dosh Ya’akov ro’einu ro’ei Yisrael Hamelech hatov v’hameitiv lakol sheb’chol yom vayom hu heitiv, hu meitiv, hu yeitiv lanu. Hu g’malanu hu gomleinu hu yig’m’leinu la’ad, l’chein ul’chesed ul’rachamim ul’revach hatzala v’hatzlacha, b’racha vi’shua nechama parnasa v’chalkala v’rachamim v’chayim v’shalom v’chol-tov, u’mikol tuv l’olam al y’chasreinu.

Harachaman hu yimloch aleinu l’olam va’ed. Harachaman hu yitbarach bashamayim u’va’aretz. Harachaman hu yishtabach l’dor dorim, v’yitpa’ar banu la’ad u’l’neitzach n’tzachim, v’yit’hadar banu la’ad ul’olmei olamim. Harachaman hu y’far’n’seinu b’chavod. Harachaman hu yishbor uleinu mei’al tzavareinu, v’hu yolicheinu kom’miyut l’artzeinu. Harachaman hu yishlach lanu b’racha m’ruba babayit hazeh, v’al shulchan zeh she’achalnu alav. Harachaman hu yishlach lanu et Eliyahu Hanavi zachur latov, vivaser lanu b’sorot tovot y’shu’ot v’nechamot.

Harachaman hu y’vareich et

(for one’s parents): avi mori (ba’al ha-bayit ha-zeh), v’et imi morati (ba’alat ha-bayit) ha-zeh, otam v’et beitam, v’et zar’am, v’et kol asher lahem,

(for one’s family): oti (v’et ishti / ba’ali / zar-i v’et) kol asher li,

(for one’s hosts): ba’al ha-bayit ha-zeh, v’et ba-alat ha-bayit ha-zeh, otam v’et beitam, v’et zar’am, v’et kol asher lahem,

(for all others): v’et kol ham’subim kan,

otanu v’et kol asher lanu, k’mo she’nitbarchu avoteinu Avraham Yitzchak v’Ya’akov bakol mikol kol, kein y’vareich otanu kulanu yachad bivracha sh’leima, v’nomar, Amein.

Bamarom y’lamdu aleihem v’aleinu z’chut she’t’hei l’mishmeret shalom. V’nisa v’racha mei’eit Adonai, utz’daka mei’Elohei yisheinu, v’nimtza chein v’seichel tov b’einei Elohim v’adam.

May heaven find merit in us that we may enjoy a lasting peace. May we receive blessings from the Lord, justice from the God of our salvation, and may we find favor and good sense in the eyes of God and men.

On Shabbat: Harachaman hu yanchileinu yom shekulo Shabbat u’minucha ul’chayei ha’olamim.

Harachaman hu yanchileinu yom shekulo tov.

Harachaman hu y’variech et M’dinat Yisrael.

Harachaman hu y’variech et chayalei Tz’va Hagana l’Yisrael, v’yagein aleihem.

Harachaman hu y’variech et m’dinat hazot, v’et chayaleiha, v’yagein aleihem.

Harachaman hu yashkiyn shalom Bayn binei Ya’akov u’vnei Yishma’ayl.

Harachaman hu y’zakeinu limot Hamashiach ul’chayei ha’olam haba.

May the Merciful One cause us to inherit the day of total goodness.

May the Merciful One bless the State of Israel.

May the Merciful One bless those who serve in the IDF and watch over them.

May the Merciful One bless this country, and its soldiers, and watch over them.

May the Merciful One enable us to live in the days of the Messiah and in the world to come.

Migdol y’shu’ot Malko v’oseh chesed limshicho l’David ul’zar’o ad olam. Oseh shalom bimromav, hu ya’aseh shalom aleinu v’al kol Yisrael v’imru, Amein.

Y’ru et Adonai k’doshav, ki ein machsor lirei’av. K’firim rashu v’ra’eivu, v’dorshei Adonai lo yach’s’ru chol tov. Hodu l’Adonai ki tov ki l’olam chasdo. Potei’ach et yadecha, u’masbia l’chol chai ratzon. Baruch hagever asher yivtach b’Adonai, V’haya Adonai mivtacho. Na’ar hayiti gam zakan’ti, v’lo ra’iti tzadik ne’ezav, v’zar’o m’vakesh lachem. Adonai oz l’amo yitein, Adonai y’vareich et amo vashalom.

The Blessing after the Meal concludes by drinking the Third Cup of wine, while reclining to the left.

Baruch atah Adonai, Eloheinu melech ha-olam, borei p'ri hagafen.

Praised are you, Adonai, Lord of the universe, who has created the fruit of the vine.

Source : Image: "Eliyahu Hanavi" - by Zalman Kleinman; Text:
The Cup of Elijah or "Come in Sweetie Pie Angel"


As we come to the end of the seder, we refill our wine glasses one last time and will soon open the front door to invite the Prophet Elijah to join our seder. 


Elijah was a fierce defender of G-d who convinced a disbelieving people to live more harmoniously and equally with one another. At the end of his life, rather than dying, he was whisked away to heaven. Tradition holds that he will return to herald in the coming of messianic days and a new era of peace. Thus, Elijah is a symbol of hope to come. 


As was the custom of Rabbi Naftali of Ropschitz, we will now pass Elijah's Cup so that everyone here may pour some of their wine into his. As we fill his cup with wine from our cups, we fill it with our own hopes for redemption will be shaped by all of our efforts.


We are about to open the door in the hope that Elijah the Prophet will enter and announce that the Messiah, a descendant of King David, is about to arrive and usher in the time of redemption for all humanity. But the line of David has become commingled with all other families and we no longer know who his heirs are. It is therefore possible that anyone seated around this very table could be his heir. G-d migh choose any one of us to help redeem the world.


If Elijah comes tonight, he will announce who has been found worthy to take that role. If he does not come, or if we are not sure whether he has come, we must close the door against anyone who tells us that our society, our people, our world, is messianic, ideal, the best possible. If we cannot see Elijah enter, it means G-d has asked each of us here tonight to help realize the world for which all people yearn. If we have opened the door and looked only upon darkness, we must realize that the darkness calls each one of us to help bring the light.


אֵלִיָּֽהוּ הַנָּבִי, אֵלִיָּֽהוּ הַתִּשְׁבִּי,

אֵלִיָּֽהוּ, אֵלִיָּֽהוּ, אֵלִיָּֽהוּ הַגִּלְעָדִי.

בִּמְהֵרָה בְיָמֵֽנוּ יָבוֹא אֵלֵֽינוּ

עִם מָשִֽׁיחַ בֶּן דָּוִד, עִם מָשִֽׁיחַ בֶּן דָּוִד

Transliteration: Eliyahu hanavi Eliyahu hatishbi Eliyahu, Eliyahu, Eliyahu hagiladi Bimheirah b’yameinu, yavo eileinu Im mashiach ben-David, Im mashiach ben-David

Source :; "Miriam’s Cup blessing" 1996 Kol Ishah, Wayland, MA;
Miriam's Cup


The Talmud teaches, "If it wasn’t for the righteousness of women of that generation, we would not have been redeemed from Egypt." The tradition of Miriam's Cup originated in Boston 1981 when a group of women who participated in a Rosh Chodesh (women’s study) group decided to honor the Prophetess Miriam during their families’ Passover Seder. By adding Miriam's Cup to our Seder table, next to the Cup of Elijah, we draw attention to the importance of Miriam and the other women of the Exodus story.

The Prophetess Miriam was bold and brave and provided strong leadership and constant encouragement to the Israelites throughout their long journey. She saved Moses from death and led the Israelites in song and dance to praise God for the miracle of splitting the Red Sea. Miriam's Cup is filled with water as a symbol of Miriam's Well. There are many legends about Miriam’s Well. It is said to have been a magical source of water that followed the Israelites for their 40 years in the desert because of the merit of Miriam. The waters of this well were said to be healing and sustaining. Thus, Miriam’s Cup is a symbol of her courage and all that sustains us through difficult times, while Elijah’s Cup is a symbol of a future Messianic time, reminding us that we must achieve balance in our own lives, not only preparing our souls for redemption, but rejuvenating our souls for the present.

DIRECTIONS: Miriam's Cup is lifted and we recite together:

This is the Cup of Miriam, the cup of living waters. Let us remember the Exodus from Egypt. These are the living waters, G-d’s gift to Miriam, which gave new life to Israel as we struggled with ourselves in the wilderness. Blessed art Thou, Lord our G-d, Who brings us from the narrows into the wilderness, sustains us with endless possibilities, and enables us to reach a new place."

Source : Artwork by Baruch Nachshon
Hallel: And Now with Praise

Leader: We conclude our Seder with the Psalms of Hallel. The transliterated Hebrew may be found on page 73.


Lo-lanu, Adonai, lo-lanu, ki l'shimcha tein kavod, al chasd'cha al amee-techa. Lamah yomru hagoyeem, ayeih na Eloheihem. Veiloheinu vashamayim, kol asher chafeitz asah. Atzabeihem kesef v'zahav, ma-aseih y'dei adam. Peh lahem v'lo y'dabeiru, einayeem lahem v'lo yiru. Oz'nayeem lahem v'lo yishma-u, af lahem v'lo y'richun. Y'deihem v'lo y'mishun, ragleihem v'lo y'haleichu, lo yehgu bigronam. K'mohem yihyu oseihem, kol asher botei-ach bahem. Yisra-el b'tach b’Adonai, ezram u-maginam hu. Beit aharon bitchu v'Adonai, ezram umageenam hu. Yirei Adonai bitchu v'Adonai, ezram u-mageenam hu.

Adonai z'charanu y'vareich, y'vareich et beit yisra-el, y'vareich et beit aharon. Y'vareich yirei Adonai, hak'tanim im hag'doleem. Yoseif Adonai aleichem, aleichem v'al b'neichem. B'rucheem atem l'Adonai, oseih shamayeem va-aretz. Hashamayeem shamayeem l'Adonai, v'ha-aretz natan livnei adam. Lo hameiteem y'hal'lu yah, v'lo kol yor'dei dumah. Va-anachnu n'vareich yah, mei-atah v'ad olam, hal'luyah.

Ahavti ki yishma Adonai, et koli tachanunay. Ki hitah oz'no li, uv'yamai ekra. Afafuni chevlei mavet, um'tzarei sh'ol m'tza-uni, tzarah v'yagon emtza. Uv'sheim Adonai ekra, anah Adonai maltah nafshi. Chanun Adonai v'tzadik, veiloheinu m'racheim. Shomeir p'ta-im Adonai, daloti v'li y'hoshi-a. Shuvi nafshi limnuchay'chi, ki Adonai gamal alay'chi. Ki chee-latzta nafshi mee-mavet, et eini min dee-mah, et ragli mee-dechi. Et-haleich leefnei Adonai, b'artzot hachayeem. He-emanti ki adabeir, anee aniti m'od. Anee amartee v'chof'zi, kol ha-adam kozeiv

Mah asheev l'Adonai, kol tagmulohi alay. Kos y'shuot esa, uv'sheim Adonai ekra. N'darai l'Adonai ashaleim, negdah na l'chol amo. Yakar b'einei Adonai, hamav'tah lachasidav. Anah Adonai ki anee avdecha, anee avd'cha ben amatecha, pee-tachta l'moseiray. L'cha ezbach zevach todah, uv'sheim Adonai ekra. N'darai l'Adonai ashaleim, negdah na l'chol amo. B'chatzrot beit Adonai, b'tocheichi y'rushalayim, hal'luyah.

Hal'lu et Adonai, kol goyim, shab'chu-hu, kol ha-umeem. Ki gavar aleinu chasdo, ve-emet Adonai l'olam, hal'luyah.

Hodu l'Adonai ki tov, ki l'olam chasdo.

Yomar na yisra-eil, ki l'olam chasdo.

Yomru na veit aharon, ki l'olam chasdo.

Yomru na yirei Adonai, ki l'olam chasdo.

Min hameitzar karati yah, anani vamerchav yah. Adonai li lo ira, mah ya-aseh li adam. Adonai li b'oz'ray, va-ani ereh v'son'ay. Tov lachasot b’Adonai, mib'toach ba-adam. Tov lachasot b’Adonai, mib'toach bindivim. Kol goyim s'vavuni, b'sheim Adonai ki amilam. Sabuni gam s'vavuni, b'sheim Adonai ki amilam. Sabuni chidvorim do-achu k'eish kotzim, b'sheim Adonai ki amilam. Dachoh d'chitani linpol, v'Adonai azarani. Ozi v'zimrat yah, vay'hi li lishuah. Kol rinah vishuah b'aholei tzadikim, y'min Adonai osah chayil. Y'min Adonai romeimah, y'min Adonai osah chayil. Lo amut ki echyeh, va-asapeir ma-asei yah. Yasor yis'rani yah, v'lamavet lo n'tanani. Pitchu li sha-arei tzedek, avo vam odeh yah. Zeh hasha-ar l’Adonai, tzadikim yavo-u vo.

Od'cha ki anitani, vat'hi li lishuah.

Od'cha ki anitani, vat'hi li lishuah.

Even ma-asu haboneem, hay'tah l'rosh pinah.

Even ma-asu habonim, hay'tah l'rosh pinah.

Mei-eit Adonai hay'tah zot, hi niflat b'eineinu.

Mei-eit Adonai hay'tah zot, hi niflat b'eineinu.

Zeh hayom asah Adonai, nagilah v’nism’chah vo.

Zeh hayom asah Adonai, nagilah v’nism’chah vo.

Ana Adonai hoshi-ah na.

Ana Adonai hoshi-ah na.

Ana Adonai hatzlichah na.

Ana Adonai hatzlichah na

Baruch haba b'sheim Adonai, beirachnuchem mibeit Adonai.

Baruch haba b'sheim Adonai, beirachnuchem mibeit Adonai.

Eil Adonai vaya-er lanu, isru chag ba-avotim ad karnot hamizbei-ach.

Eil Adonai vaya-er lanu, isru chag ba-avotim, ad karnot hamizbei-ach.

Eili atah v'odeka, elohai arom'meka.

Eili atah v'odeka, elohai arom'meka.

Hodu l'Adonai ki tov, ki l'olam chasdo.

Hodu l'Adonai ki tov, ki l'olam chasdo.

Nishmat kol chai t’vareich et shimcha, Adonai Eloheinu, v’ru’ach kol basar t’fa’er u’tromem zicharcha, malkeinu, tamid. Min ha’olam v’ad ha’olam atah El, u’mibaladecha ein lanu melech go’al u’moshia, podeh u’matzil u’m’farnes u’m’rachaem b’chol ait tzarah v’tzukah. Ein lanu melech ela atah. Elohei harishonim v’ha’achronim, Elohah kol bri’ot, Adon kol toldot, ha’m’hulal b’rov hatishbachot, ham’naheg olamo b’chesed u’v’riyotav b’rachamim. V’Adonai lo yanum v’lo yiyshan – ham’orer y’shanim v’hameikitz nidamim, v’hameisi’ach ilmim v’hamatir asurim v’hasomech noflim v’hazokef k’fufim. L’cha l’vadcha anachnu modim.

Eilu pinu malei shirah kayam, u’l’shonainu rinah kahamon galav, v’siftoteinu shevach k’merchavai rakia, v’eineinu m’eerot kashemesh v’chayareiach, v’yadeinu frusot k’nisrai shamayim, v’ragleinu kalot ka’ayalot – ein anachnu maspikim l’hodot lach, Adonai Eloheinu v’Elohei avoteinu, u’l’vareich, et shimcha al achat, mai’elef, alfei alafim v’ribai r’vavot p’amim, hatovot she’asita im avoteinu v’imanu, mimitzrayim g’altanu, Adonai Eloheinu, u’mibeit avadim p’ditanu, b’ra’av zantanu u’v’sava kilkaltanu, maicherev hitzaltanu u’midever milat’tanu, u’maichalim ra’im v’ne’emanim dilitanu. Ad heina azarunu rachamecha v’lo azavunu chasadecha, v’al titsheinu, Adonai Eloheinu, lanetzach. Al kein aivarim shepilagta banu v’ru’ach u’nishamah shenafachta b’apeinu v’lashon asher samta b’finu – hein haim yodu viyvarchu viyshabchu viyfa’aru viyrom’mu v’ya’aritzu v’yak’dishu v’yamlichu et shimcha malkeinu. Ki chol peh lach yodeh, v’chol lashon lach tishava, v’chol berech lach tichra, v’chol komah l’fanecha tishtachaveh, v’chol l’vavot yiyra’oocha, v’chol kerev u’chlayot y’zamru lishmecha, kadavar shekatuv, kol atzmotai toemarna: Adonai, mi chamocha matzil ani maichazak mimenu v’ani v’evyon migozlo. Mi yidmeh lach u’mi yishveh lach u’mi ya’aroch lach ha’El hagadol, hagibor v’hanora, El elyon, konai shamayim v’aretz. N’hallelcha u’n’shabaichacha u’n’fa’ercha u’n’vareich et shem kadshecha, k’amur: l’David, barchi nafshi et Adonai v’chol kravai et shem kadsho.

Ha’El b’ta’atzumot uzecha, hagadol bichvod sh’mecha, hagibor lanetzach v’hanora b’norotecha, hamelech hayoshev al kisei ram v’nisa.

Shochain ad marom v’kadosh sh’mo. V’katuv: ran’n’u tzadikim b’Adonai, laiysharim nava t’hilah.

B’fi y’sharim tithallal, u’v’divrei tzadikim titbarach, u’vilshon chasidim titromam, u’vkerev k’doshim titkadash.

Uv’makalot riv’vot amcha beit Yisrael b’rinah yitpa’er shimcha, malkeinu, b’chol dor vador. Shekein chovat kol hay’tzurim l’fanech, Adonai Eloheinu v’Elohei avoteinu, l’hodot l’hallel l’shabei’ach, l’pa’er l’romem l’hader l’vareich, l’alai u’l’kalais al kol divrei shirot v’tishbachot David ben Yishai avd’cha, mishichecha.

Yishtabach shimcha la’ad malkeinu, Ha’El hamelech hagadol v’hakadosh bashamayim u’va’aretz, ki l’cha na’eh, Adonai Eloheinu v’Elohei avoteinu, shir u’shvachah, hallel v’zimrah, oaz u’memshalah, netzach, g’dulah u’g’vurah, t’hilah v’tiferet, k’dushah u’malchut, brachot v’hoda’ot mai’atah v’ad olam.


DIRECTIONS: We read responsively, following each verse all respond, "For His kindness is everlasting."

Give thanks to the L-rd for He is gracious; for His kindness is everlasting.

Give thanks to the G‑d of gods; for His kindness is everlasting.

Give thanks to the L-rd of lords; for His kindness is everlasting.

Who alone does great wonders; for His kindness is everlasting.

Who made the heavens with understanding; for His kindness is everlasting.

Who stretched out the earth above the waters; for His kindness is everlasting.

Who made the great lights; for His kindness is everlasting.

The sun, to rule by day; for His kindness is everlasting.

The moon and stars to rule by night; for His kindness is everlasting.

Who struck Egypt through their first-born; for His love is everlasting.

And brought Israel out of their midst; for His kindness is everlasting.

With a strong hand and with an outstretched arm; for His kindness is everlasting.

Who split the Sea of Reeds into sections; for His kindness is everlasting.

And led Israel through it; for His kindness is everlasting.

And cast Pharaoh and his army into the Sea of Reeds; for His kindness is everlasting.

Who led His people through the desert; for His kindness is everlasting.

Who struck great kings; for His kindness is everlasting.

And slew mighty kings; for His kindness is everlasting.

Sichon, king of the Amorites; for His kindness is everlasting.

And Og, king of Bashan; for His kindness is everlasting.

And gave their land as a heritage; for His kindness is everlasting.

A heritage to Israel, His servant; for His kindness is everlasting.

Who remembered us in our lowliness; for His kindness is everlasting.

And delivered us from our oppressors; for His kindness is everlasting.

Who gives food to all flesh; for His kindness is everlasting.

Thank the G‑d of heaven; for His kindness is everlasting.



As our Seder draws near an end, we take up our wine cups one last time. With this fourth cup of wine, we remember G-d's fourth promise, "I will take you to be my people." We give thanks for the experience of celebrating Passover with our family and friends, for the traditions that help inform our daily lives and guide our actions and aspirations. We remember once again, that not everyone in our world is yet free and we are reminded of our responsibility to be G-d's partners in bringing freedom to those who are enslaved, peace to those at war, and food to those who are hungry. This is our purpose as Jews. May we live to fulfill it.

Let us raise our glasses and say together:

בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה יְיָ, אֱלֹהֵינוּ מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם, בּוֹרֵא פְּרִי הַגָּפֶן:

Baruch Atah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech ha-olam, borei p’ree hagafen.

Blessed art thou, Lord our G-d, King of Universe, who creates the fruit of the vine.

Source : Traditional

Nirtzah נרצה

After all the singing is concluded we rise and recite together the traditional formula, the Seder is concluded .

חֲסַל סִדּוּר פֶּסַח כְּהִלְכָתוֹ, כְּכָל מִשְׁפָּטוֹ וְחֻקָתוֹ. כַּאֲשֶׁר זָכִינוּ לְסַדֵּר אוֹתוֹ. כֵּן נִזְכֶּה לַעֲשׂוֹתוֹ. זָךְ שׁוֹכֵן מְעוֹנָה, קוֹמֵם קְהַל עֲדַת מִי מָנָה. בְּקָרוֹב נַהֵל נִטְעֵי כַנָּה. פְּדוּיִם לְצִיוֹן בְּרִנָּה.

Chasal sidur pesach k'hilchato, k'chol mishpato v'chukato. Ka-asher zachinu l'sadeir oto, kein nizkeh la-asoto. Zach shochein m'onah, komeim k'hal adat mi manah. B'karov naheil nitei chanah, p'duyim l'tzion b'rinah.

The Passover Seder is concluded, according to each traditional detail with all its laws and customs. As we have been privileged to celebrate this Seder, so may we one day celebrate it in Jerusalem. Pure One who dwells in the high places, support your People countless in number. May you soon redeem all your People joyfully in Zion.

At the conclusion of the Seder, everyone joins in singing:

לְשָׁנָה הַבָּאָה בִּירוּשַָׁלָיִם

L'shana Haba'ah b'Y’rushalayim

Next Year in Jerusalem!

Source : Illustration: Next Year in Jerusalem by Jonathan Kis-Lev; Text: Haggadah for the American Family, 1966


The prescribed order of the Seder is now complete. We have retold the ancient story of Israel's redemption. We have partaken of the traditional foods, symbols of the struggle for human freedom.


As we have been privileged to observe the Seder tonight, may all be privileged to celebrate it, together, again next year. May it be G-d's will to preserve us in life and in good health.


May the spirit of this festival remain with us throughout the coming year and may we be imbued, at all times, with its lofty and exalted tteachings.


May Zion be blessed with peace, and may our brethren aand all mankind live in harmony and contentment. Amen

Everyone joins in singing:

לְשָׁנָה הַבָּאָה בִּירוּשַָׁלָיִם.

L'shana Haba'ah b'Y’rushalayim

Next Year in Jerusalem!

Source : David W. Aston

Counting the Omer

On the second night, the Omer is counted:

. בָרוךְ אַתָה ייָ אֱלֹהֵינו מֶלֶךְ העֹולָם אֲשֶר קִדְשָנו בְמִצְוֹותָיו וְצִוָנו עַל סְפִירַת הָעֹמֶר.

הַיֹום יֹום אֶחָד לַעֹמֶר.

Baruch Atah Adonai Eloheinu Melech ha’olam, asher kid’shanu b’mitzvotav v’tzivanu al sfirat ha’omer.

Hayom yom echad la’omer.

Blessed are You, L-rd our G-d, King of the Universe, who sanctifies us with His commandments, and commanded us concerning the counting of the Omer.

Today is one day of the Omer.


חַד ּגַדְיָא,חַד ּגַדְיָא

.ּדְזַּבִין אַּבָא ּבִתְרֵי זוזֵי, חַד ּגַדְיָא,חַד ּגַדְיָא

.וְאָתָא ׁשונְרָא וְאַָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, ּדְזַּבִין אַּבָא ּבִתְרֵי זוזֵי, חַד ּגַדְיָא,חַד ּגַדְיָא

.וְאָתָא כַלְּבָא וְנָׁשַךְ לְׁשונְרָא, ּדְאַָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, ּדְזַּבִין אַּבָא ּבִתְרֵי זוזֵי, חַד ּגַדְיָא,חַד ּגַדְיָא

.וְאָתָא חוטְרָא והִּכָה לְכַלְּבָא, ּדְנָׁשַךְ לְׁשונְרָא, ּדְאַָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, ּדְזַּבִין אַּבָא ּבִתְרֵי זוזֵי, חַד ּגַדְיָא,חַד ּגַדְיָא

וְאָתָא נורָא וְׂשָרַף לְחוטְרָא, ּדְהִּכָה לְכַלְּבָא, ּדְנָׁשַךְ לְׁשונְרָא, ּדְאַָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, ּדְזַּבִין אַּבָא ּבִתְרֵי זוזֵי, חַד ּגַדְיָא, חַד ּגַדְיָא.

וְאָתָא מַיָא וְכָבָה לְנורָא, ּדְׂשָרַף לְחוטְרָא, ּדְהִּכָה לְכַלְּבָא, ּדְנָׁשַךְ לְׁשונְרָא, ּדְאַָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, ּדְזַּבִין אַּבָא ּבִתְרֵי זוזֵי, חַד ּגַדְיָא,חַד ּגַדְיָא.

וְאָתָא תורָא וְׁשָתָה לְמַיָא, ּדְכָבָה לְנורָא, ּדְׂשָרַף לְחוטְרָא, ּדְהִּכָה לְכַלְּבָא, ּדְנָׁשַךְ לְׁשונְרָא, ּדְאַָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, ּדְזַּבִין אַּבָא ּבִתְרֵי זוזֵי, חַד ּגַדְיָא,חַד ּגַדְיָא.

וְאָתָא הַׁשוחֵט וְׁשָחַט לְתורָא, ּדְׁשָתָה לְמַיָא, ּדְכָבָה לְנורָא, ּדְׂשָרַף לְחוטְרָא, ּדְהִּכָה לְכַלְּבָא, ּדְנָׁשַךְ לְׁשונְרָא, ּדְאַָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, ּדְזַּבִין אַּבָא ּבִתְרֵי זוזֵי, חַד ּגַדְיָא,חַד ּגַדְיָא.

וְאָתָא מַלְאָךְ הַּמָוֶת וְׁשָחַט לְׁשוחֵט, ּדְׁשָחַט לְתורָא, ּדְׁשָתָה לְמַיָא, ּדְכָבָה לְנורָא, ּדְׂשָרַף לְחוטְרָא, ּדְהִּכָה לְכַלְּבָא, ּדְנָׁשַךְ לְׁשונְרָא, ּדְאַָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא, ּדְזַּבִין אַּבָא ּבִתְרֵי זוזֵי, חַד ּגַדְיָא, חַד ּגַדְיָא.

וְאָתָא הַּקָדוׁש ּבָרוךְ הוא וְׁשָחַט לְמַלְאַךְ הַּמָוֶת, ּדְׁשָחַט לְׁשוחֵט, ּדְׁשָחַט לְתורָא, ּדְׁשָתָה לְמַיָא, ּדְכָבָה לְנורָא, ּדְׂשָרַף לְחוטְרָא, ּדְהִּכָה לְכַלְּבָא, ּדְנָׁשַךְ לְׁשונְרָא, ּדְאַָכְלָה לְגַדְיָא,

ּדְזַּבִין אַּבָא ּבִתְרֵי זוזֵי, חַד ּגַדְיָא,חַד ּגַדְיָא.

One little goat, one little goat that my father bought for two zuzim.
A cat came and ate the goat that my father bought for two zuzim. One little goat, one little goat.
A dog came and bit the cat that ate the goat that my father bought for two zuzim. One little goat, one little goat.
A stick came and hit the dog that bit the cat that ate the goat that my father bought for two zuzim. One little goat, one little goat.
A fire came and burned the stick that bit the dog that bit the cat that ate the goat that my father bought for two zuzim. One little goat, one little goat.
Water​ came and put out the fire that burned the stick that bit the dog that bit the cat that ate the goat that my father bought for two zuzim. One little goat, one little goat.
An ox came and drank the water that put out the fire that burned the stick that bit the dog that bit the cat that ate the goat that my father bought for two zuzim. One little goat, one little goat.
A butcher came and slaughter​​​​​​ed the ox that drank the water that put out the fire that burned the stick that bit the dog that bit the cat that ate the goat that my father bought for two zuzim. One little goat, one little goat.
The angel of death came and slaughter​​​​​​ed the butcher who slaughter​​​​​​ed the ox that drank the water that put out the fire that burned the stick that bit the dog that bit the cat that ate the goat that my father bought for two zuzim. One little goat, one little goat.
Then the Holy One, Blessed be He, came and slaughter​​​​​​ed the angel of death who slaughter​​​​​​ed the butcher who slaughter​​​​​​ed the ox that drank the water that put out the fire that burned the stick that bit the dog that bit the cat that ate the goat that my father bought for two zuzim. One little goat, one little goat.