Pesach: Are you thirsty without knowing it?
When are we thirsty without even knowing it?
At our seder tables, we declare,
“Kol dichfin yeitei v’yeichol. Kol ditzrich yeitei veyifsach.” – “Let all who are hungry come in and eat. Let all who are needy come in and partake of the paschal lamb sacrifice.”
It’s an odd statement. We are turning to people who are already with us and issuing them with an invitation to come and join us. But actually if you look carefully, you’ll notice that two invitations are issued. The first is, ‘kol dichvin yeitei v’yeichol’ – let all who are hungry come in and eat. This applies to physical hunger, and physical hunger is something that we’re always aware of.
The second invitation, for a different type of person, is, “Kol ditzrich yeitei veyifsach,” – “Let all those who have a need come in and join us and partake of the Pesach experience.” This refers to a spiritual need; a thirst for spirituality.
Our thirst for spirituality is something that every single soul craves. However, unlike physical hunger, this is not a need that everyone actually feels. If we are going to guarantee the continuity of our faith, we need to ensure that that spiritual thirst is satiated within every single person.
How then do you enable a person to come and partake of the Pesach experience if they have no desire; if they feel no need? The answer is by combining the two together; provide a meal, something that everybody would love to tuck in to. At the same time, enable everybody to experience the heights of spiritual satisfaction.
This has been a means throughout the ages for providing entry points to our faith, to enjoy what our glorious tradition has to offer. And this is the greatness of the Pesach seder – there is something for everybody and sure enough, foods of all types. It’s a glorious banquet! But ultimately, that’s not the real purpose. The real purpose is ‘Kol distzrich yeitei veyifsach’ – that we can appreciate on this important night, how great Hashem is to have saved our people; how privileged we are to have a Torah and how allegiance to the mitzvot brings us happiness and meaning in life.
This coming Pesach, baruch Hashem, is one that we’re going to enjoy immensely. We enjoy every Pesach, but on this occasion, since most of us were in lockdown for the last two Pesachs, we will cherish the incredible opportunity of coming together with family and with friends. May we enjoy our Pesach banquet, but more importantly than that, may we all appreciate fully how privileged we are to be members of our great faith.
I wish you all Pesach kasher vesameach.