Which son are you?

Thursday, 14 April, 2022 - 2:15 am


One of the students of my dear wife Devorah, who is an interesting and intelligent young woman, asked her this week: “Which son are you?”

They were learning the Haggadah, and they learned about the four sons mentioned in it: the wise, the wicked, the simple and the one who does not know how to ask. They even learned about the fifth son the Rebbe spoke about – the one who is not even present at the Seder. And then, the girl looked at her teacher and asked: “Which son are you?”

Devorah, who always says only what she can really relate to, didn’t know what to answer.

The wise son – I cannot say that I am him. The wicked one – I think I’m not. The simple – well, sometimes I am naïve. I don’t know. The one who does not know how to ask, I don’t think so. The fifth – of course not; I have always been present at the Seder table.

“It’s not clear to me,” she responded finally, and then asked immediately: “And you? Which son are you?”

The girl thought for a bit and said: “I think I’m a bit of all of them. You as my teacher know that sometimes I am like the wise son who asks pertinent questions; indeed, you even tell me so. But you also know that often I ask provocative questions, like the wicked son; often I am also really simple and naïve, and there are definitely situations in which I don’t even know what to ask.”

This brave, mature and special answer of this lovely student stayed with us during our quiet talks of early morning or late evening. To tell the truth, she made us think and see in ourselves as well something of every one of the sons in the Haggadah.

And you?

Which son are you?

Stop a moment when you read the Haggadah this year, and try to test yourself in its light. It will be interesting.

Wishing you Shabbat Shalom, and a Happy and Kosher Pesach!


Rabbi Zalmen Wishedski

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