Passover Questions and Themes

Are you ready to answer these key questions about Passover? Take a look at these essential questions and come to the Seder prepared. You may not know all the answers, but you can use these questions as a springboard for discussion at your Seder table. Includes advanced questions for your more seasoned Seder participants. Also includes a list of themes you can use as a basis for more divrei Torah at the Seder.


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BASIC PASSOVER QUESTIONS

  1. What does it mean: "In every generation, a person is required to see himself as if he left Egypt"? I didn't leave Egypt; my ancestors did. How am I supposed to fulfill that requirement?
  2. Why are we celebrating our redemption from Egypt? Sure, it's fun to celebrate, but what does that have to do with my life today?
  3. Why do we have to get rid of chametz before Pesach? Why can't we just eat matzah and leave the chametz around, too?
  4. Why are we prohibited from owning chametz on Peasch? Why isn't it enough to just not eat it?

ADVANCED PASSOVER QUESTIONS

  1. Why do we have to actually eat matzah and marror? Why isn't it enough to just tell the story of the bitterness of the exile and our subsequent redemption, without actually eating the symbolic foods?
  2. Why do we eat the afikomen last? Why aren't we allowed to eat anything after the Afikoman?
  3. Why is "Urchatz" the only step in the Seder that begins with a Vav?
  4. If we don't normally wash our hands before eating vegetables dipped in salt water (or do you?) then why do we do it on the Seder night?
  5. In Yachatz, we split the middle matzah and save the larger piece for later. Why do we save the larger piece, not the smaller piece? Why do we do it at this point in the seder, before Magid? Maybe we should do it after Magid, right before we start to eat the matzah.
  6. Does a person always have free will? Why were the Egyptians punished for enslaving the Jews, if the Egyptian exile was part of God's plan that He revealed to Avraham so many years before?

PESACH THEMES

  • Freedom: What does freedom mean? How do we achieve personal freedom from our limitations or bad habits?
  • Questioning: Judaism encourages questions, questions and curiosity are the best way to learn
  • Suffering as a necessary prerequisite for growth
  • Matzah represents humility
  • How Chametz represents the Yetzer Hara
  • Redemption can come in the blink of an eye