Forgive me for my last post. My friend Sandra http://www.jazzieandtahlia.typepad.com/ just asked me what the Four Questions were. Duh! Sometimes I forget about "diversity" & just ramble on.
The first 2 nights of Passover begin with a seder - a family meal (usually with tons of family & friends in attendance) is enjoyed with the retelling of the exodus from Egypt to Israel in a book called a "hagaddah." At one point in the seder, a child (usually the youngest male who can read Hebrew - although to be honest it was me until my 30th birthday) reads the Four Questions. These questions are asked & then the person leading the seder answers. These questions explain why we do what we do on Passover. Here goes:
Why is this night different from all others?
1. Any other night we can eat whatever kind of bread we choose. On this night, we can eat only unleavened bread (matzah).
2. Any other night, we can eat whatever herbs we want. On this night, we eat only bitter herbs.
3. Any other night, we do not dip even once. On this night, we dip twice.
4. Any other night, we eat & drink either sitting or reclining. On this night, we all recline.
And for inquiring minds, the answers:
1. We eat matzah as a reminder of the Hebrew slaves who had to leave Egypt in a hurry & didn't have time to make sure their bread rose.
2. We eat bitter herbs to remind us of the bitterness of slavery.
3. We dip twice to remind us of the tears of the Hebrew slaves.
4. We recline because now we are not slaves & have choices.
Some people may argue with my translations & answers, but these are the general explanations.