Friday, April 08, 2022

sharing is caring

 הָיָ֞ה כִּֽי־תָבֹ֣אוּ אֶל־הָאָ֗רֶץ אֲשֶׁ֨ר יִתֵּ֧ן ה׳ לָכֶ֖ם כַּֽאֲשֶׁ֣ר דִּבֵּ֑ר וּשְׁמַרְתֶּ֖ם אֶת־הָֽעֲבֹדָ֥ה הַזֹּֽאת: (12:25) 

Pesach is not a mitzvah ha'teluya ba'aretz, so why is it, asks the Tiferes Shlomo in his torah for Shabbos haGadol, that the Torah presents it as such?  

Chasam Sofer in his derashos develops a yesod that Dr. Who put best in describing the TARDIS: "It's bigger on the inside than on the outside."  When you are invested in a life of pnimiyus, then no matter how little of the chitzoniyus of this world you have -- your house is small, you barely scrape by, you don't have the latest gadget or other "stuff" -- it doesn't really matter, because your inner space is huge.  However, if you are invested in the outside and that's all that really matters and exists for you, you will find the opposite to be true: you will always feel you don't have enough space, time, possessions, "stuff."

Eretz Yisrael is such a small country, yet who does Ukraine call on to admit more and more refugees?  Us, of course. Eretz Yisrael is called "Eretz Tzvi," the gemara explains, because if you skin a deer and take out the meat, you will find that it's impossible to stuff the flesh back inside the skin.  Somehow, there is more inside than the outside can hold.  So too Eretz Yisrael, even though based on geography and physical space it seems there is not room there for all of us, but somehow it works.  Similarly, Chazal tell us that no matter how many people came to Yerushalayim, no one ever said, "tzar li ha'makom," that there was not enough space. In the Mikdash itself, "omdim tzefufim u'mishtachavim revachim."

Compare that with my neighborhood in NY where big houses are torn down so that people can build even bigger houses.  I think each family member who lives in such homes must have their own wing or something!  No matter how big a mansion they have, some people need an even bigger mansion. 

Eretz Yisrael, Yerushalayim, the makom Mikdash -- these are holy, pnimiyusdik places.  They are bigger on the inside than on the outside, so there is room for everyone.  But no matter how big your home is, if you are empty on the inside, it's never going to be big enough.

We start the haggadah by inviting whoever is in need to come join us in eating the food we once ate while enslaved, "Ha lachma anya...,  and we end that opening passage by saying that next year we will be in Eretz Yisrael.  What's the connection between the reisha and the seifa? 

Chasam Sofer explains that even though we are eating the same lechem oni that we ate as slaves, even though we prepared just enough for our family sitting around the table, we still say "kol dichfin..., " there is enough for anyone who wants to come and eat, there is room for everyone at the table, and the same "lechem oni" we ate as slaves it still will satisfy us now.  

וְהָיָ֞ה כִּֽי־תָבֹ֣אוּ אֶל־הָאָ֗רֶץ...  When we invite everyone in, says the Chasam Sofer, "Harei hu m'ein Eretz ha'kedosha," it's in some small way like Eretz Yisrael, where the inside is bigger than the outside, where the table and the food expand and provide enough even though if you measure the physical dimensions b'derech ha'teva it does not seem possible.  

That's perhaps the answer to the Radomsker's kashe.  That's how to celebrate Pesach in Eretz Yisrael even if physically you may be far away.

Our parsha warns, if you come to Eretz Canaan, you may find a nega on your walls:

וּבָא֙ אֲשֶׁר־ל֣וֹ הַבַּ֔יִת וְהִגִּ֥יד לַכֹּהֵ֖ן לֵאמֹ֑ר כְּנֶ֕גַע נִרְאָ֥ה לִ֖י בַּבָּֽיִת

Why the punishment?  The Midrash finds the answer in one word --  אֲשֶׁר־**ל֣וֹ **הַבַּ֔יִת , it's HIS house, to the exclusion of anyone else who may want to come in.  וּבָא אֲשֶׁר לוֹ הַבַּיִת, מִי שֶׁיִּחֵד בֵּיתוֹ לוֹ וְאֵינוֹ רוֹצֶה לֵהָנוֹת לַאֲחֵרִים  That's the klipa of כִּ֤י תָבֹ֙אוּ֙ אֶל־אֶ֣רֶץ כְּנַ֔עַן -- Eretz Canaan, which has not yet been transformed into Eretz Yisrael, Eretz Tzvi, where there is room enough to share.

We end ha lachma anya by saying next year in Eretz Yisrael because midah k'neged midah, if you manage to transform your home into the "m'ein Eretz ha'kedosha," as the Chasam Sofer puts it, by opening your door to all, then that is the siman that you don't belong in galus, that you are deserving of the real thing, Eretz Tzvi, not just the mei'ein.  

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