6 Tishrei 5781 / Thursday, September 24, 2020 | Torah Reading: Ha'azinu
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A Truly Happy Passover    

A Truly Happy Passover

We all wish each other a “Happy and Kosher Passover.” Let’s talk practical about how to make these days preparing for Passover happy as well…


It’s everywhere: PASSOVER IS COMING! 


The question is – are we happy about it?! 


The first thing about preparing for Passover happily is - NO CHUMROT – no stringencies! It is hard enough to keep to the Shulchan Aruch  the Code of Jewish Law, ie. Our minimum requirements for Passover. Follow Jewish law, clean what must be cleaned, dust is not chametz and spring cleaning should be done AFTER Pesach!  


The rest of the worry over getting rid of chametz should go into prayers asking Hashem for a truly kosher holiday, and not worry or stringencies. And G-d forbid we should yell at a child (or make them cry) because of Pesach cleaning! A child who sees his parents happily preparing for Pesach with prayers and singing (“Thank you Hashem Pesach is coming!”) will follow in their footsteps. If they see the opposite c”v, they could just say to themselves: “Why do I need this?”  


Rebbe Nachman stressed the importance of always being happy, and especially when performing mitzvot. When it comes to preparing for Passover, this becomes even more crucial. All the worth of the mitzvah is in the HAPPINESS that we put into it! 


Everyone should merit to be an Abba, and Imma – how happy are we when our children are happy? What happiness we have! Do you want to make Hashem happy? Truly, make Hashem happy? So be happy! Be happy to serve Hashem! Be happy with the mitzvot that we do! 


How do you measure your emuna? Happiness! Because if you are not happy, it means that you are not happy with the way Hashem is running your life! It means you’re not happy with Hashem’s hashgacha pratis – personal guidance over your life. 


This is why we came to this world, and we need to pray on it every day, and keep repeating it to ourselves: “I came into this world to be happy, to sing and dance and thank You. I came to this world to be happy! Do mitzvot with happiness, pray with happiness, learn with happiness. We need to do teshuva also, to repent, we have our hour of personal prayer – a person cannot be truly happy without an hour of repentance every day. Review what you did from yesterday until today, and repent on every single thing. The rest of the day – happy! There was one Breselver who once said: “One hour a day Yom Kippur, 23 hours Purim! Happy and dancing!” A person has to choose to be happy, and know that this is what he needs to work on. 


The truth is that when we are happy even with the problems and difficulties, the salvation comes very, very fast. But we aren’t happy because we want to be saved quickly. We are happy because this is the emet, the truth. We say at the beginning of Shemonei Esrei: “and my mouth shall tell Your praises.” As I wrote in my commentary, this is our purpose in this world: to praise and thank Hashem!   


We should be so happy to prepare for Passover! Pesach isn’t one mitzvah – it’s thousands of mitzvot. Every second you don’t eat chametz, is a mitzvah! Every second you keep Shabbat/Yom Tov, is a mitzvah! You come out of Pesach loaded with thousands of wonderful, new, important mitzvot! Be happy with them!!! To not be happy with the mitzvot is the biggest insult to Hashem there is – that’s why someone can keep the entire Torah to the letter and still receive 98 curses… “because you did not serve Me with a happy heart.” 




One of the poskim for Chut shel Chessed publicized a part of the ruling of another great posek of Belz shlita in this week’s Chut shel Chessed newsletter, which is worth adding here: 


Keep your cleaning priorities straight this year with Coronavirus! The children are all at home, and they haven’t had school in weeks. Don’t put your energy into cleaning and scrubbing – put your energy into your children. Rely on the bitul – cancelling the chametz that we say after we check the house at night, and burn the chametz in the morning. Make sure that there is no k’zayit  significant volume of chametz in the house, the kitchen cabinets, etc. (like a whole cookie, or a pretzel, or the like) and sell the crumbs/rely on the bitul 


Instead, learn with your children, pray with them, and perhaps even clean with them. Let them see what preparing for Passover is meant to be – with emuna and happiness! The whole family together!  


You don’t know what dangerous things they could be doing while you are busy cleaning – including things like videos and the Internet G-d forbid. Coronavirus will eventually end – you want to make sure that no negative effects from being home and ignored continue G-d forbid. Make sure you come into Passover with your children, and not without them! 



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