- Shabbat and Holidays
- Seder Night
Hi Rabbi! Why is Ha Lachma at the beginning of the magid portion of the Seder said in Aramaic?
Aramaic is a sister-language to the Holy Hebrew, and was the spoken language for Jews in in Babylon & many places over history. The Chatam Sofer explains that the Ha Lachma Anya is not an invitation to the hungry to join our seder, but rather was a "kina" (mourning lament) recited by the Jews of Babylon who were crying that there was no Pesach sacrifice. In the Temple, one couldn't simply invite anyone in to his seder, but rather, he had to be on your list already in the afternoon at the time of the sacrifice. Accordingly, they lamented: "This is Pesach?! Without the sacrifice, and anyone can just walk in- the main part is missing, and it's not the real Pesach! That's why it's in Aramaic, & it also explains why it finishes off: "Next year in the Land of Israel!".