Home Jewish Holidays Freedom of Speech and the Struggle for Truth

Freedom of Speech and the Struggle for Truth

by Chaim Kramer

The Zohar teaches that PeSaCH is actually a hybrid word. It can be articulated as “Peh” (a mouth) that “SaCh” (speaks).

Mitzrayim (Egypt) implies the idea of limitations. The word MiTZRAim refers to a MeiTZaR, which denotes narrowness and constriction. The Zohar explains that the narrowest part of the body is the neck, through which the vocal cords pass. The Egyptians oppressed the Jews to the point where they had no time to pray, thus limiting their ability to speak to HaShem. The writings teach that the exile was actually one of speech. We find (Exodus 2:23), “The Jews sighed from their work, and they cried out; their screams ascended to Heaven… God heard their suffering…” However, we do not find the word “prayer” in the descriptions. Thus, it was speech that was in exile.

We see this today in the media, where reporters use incessant pressure and falsehoods to present their side of the news, thereby limiting the ability to find truth being spoken. It seems that everyone supports murder and not the eradication of evil!

The festival of Pesach is the freedom of speech. Of course, everyone can express their views freely, but watch how the supporters of evil suppress everyone who wishes to expose the truth! This is not free speech, nor freedom of speech. It is Mitzrayim, the constriction of truth, honesty, and integrity.

Our duty this Pesach is to read the Haggadah carefully, recognizing our oppression and situation as it really is. We should interpret the text as if we are being subjected to the oppressive Egyptians and media that seek to strangle the truth. Our mission is to open our mouths with praise to HaShem for the amazing miracles that we witness on a daily basis and to seek His compassion for the future.

This way, we will be able to see, as written in the Haggadah, that we too were in Mitzrayim and that HaShem is still with us, and that we will yet see the recurring miracles, speedily in our days, with the Ultimate Redemption and the Coming of Mashiach, Amen.

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