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Thoughts Count, Too!
The word "Haggadah" means telling. But how you read the Haggadah is just as important as what you say. This story explains what we mean.
Once a great Rebbe, the Chozeh ("Seer") of Lublin, asked a wealthy man for a favor. "Please give my student, Reb Shmuel of Karev, everything he needs for Passover."
The wealthy man did as the Rebbe asked. Reb Shmuel received new clothes for his entire family, pillows to lean on, the finest meat and fish, hand-baked matzos in abundance, and aged wine.
When the time came for the Seder, Reb Shmuel looked and felt like a king. Slowly and clearly, yet with great enthusiasm, he read and explained the Haggadah to the guests at his table.
However, Reb Shmuel was not used to the heavy food or aged wine. By the end of the next day's meal, he was very, very tired. Reb Shmuel decided to nap, so he would have enough energy to make the second night's seder as enjoyable as the first. But he overslept.
When he finally awoke, he realized that he would have to rush. He ate and drank the minimum and read the Haggadah without explanation just to finish on time. After it was over, he felt humbled and somewhat disappointed by the experience, especially when he compared it to the first night's seder.
Some time later, he visited the Chozeh of Lublin. As he stepped into his study, the Rebbe said to him, "Reb Shmuel, you are mistaken! The second seder was conducted out of simple desire to fulfill the mitzvah. Therefore, it was received in Heaven more favorably than the first!"
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