Saturday, 17 September 2016

Parshah: Ki Tavo - Arami Oved Avi

Question 1:
Why did Chazal choose Arami Oved Avi to illustrate the Central theme of Exodus in the Haggadah as opposed to - for example - Parshat Bo?
And given that there is a Tosefta (Peshachim 10:8) that states: "Those who live the in the city and have nobody to recite Hallel would gather in the shul".

Question 2: 
How would you know how to lead a Seder without knowing how to lead Hallel?
Here is a proposed answer to the 2 questions 
 
Originally, all farmers, when they brought the Bikurim, the first fruit, would recite Arami Oved Avi. So Chazal chose Arami Oved Avi to explain the Exodus because every farmer in Israel would be familiar with Arami Oved Avi when they brought the bikkurim annually to the Beit Hamikdash in Yerushalyim.

Now we can answer both questions because we can now explain:

1. Why Hazal specifically picked this Parsha over any other
2. How a Leader at the Seder could be familiar with the Haggadah [Arami Oved Avi] yet still not be familiar with how to lead the Hallel

RRW

Ki Tavo: Free Choice

From the archives of Nishma's Online Library at http://www.nishma.org/, we have chosen an article that relates to the week's parsha, both to direct you to this dvar Torah but also for the purposes of initiating some discussion.
This week's parsha is Ki Tavo and the topic is free choice. So often, people use the argument of free choice to explain why knowledge of God is not clear -- for it it was, we would not have free choice but would clearly not sin -- and/or to contend that there can be no consequences for our actions -- for if there were, we would not have free choice as, for sure, we would do what is good for us. If one considers the brachot and klalot in the Torah, though, one must recognize that free choice exists even when knowledge of God is absolute and the recognition of the consequences of one's actions, even the punishment for sins, is clear and accepted. We invite you to look at an article on this topic at http://www.nishma.org/articles/insight/insight5757-18.htm