Kenneth Cohen


Pesach is definitely in the air with tonight being Rosh Chodesh Nissan. This is a holiday that tests one’s commitment to Halacha. On the one hand, it is clearly a holiday of abundant Chumrot, stringencies, as it is only one week and people tend to be extra strict during the week of Pesach. Admittedly, some of these Chumrot are often exaggerated, but the actual Halacha must not be compromised.

Years ago, I remember young students taking home a flyer titled, “Do it right on Pesach night. It had all of the measurements necessary in order to fulfill the Mitzvot of the evening. This included the required size of our wine glasses for the four cups, the amount of Matza, Maror, Karpas, etc.

Pesach is really a test for all of us to see how seriously we take Halacha and how thoroughly we want to follow it. Ideally, we are to act like the wise son in the Hagaddah. He wanted to know everything about Pesach to the last detail. So should we.

About the Author
Rabbi Cohen has been a Torah instructor at Machon Meir, Jerusalem, for over twenty years while also teaching a Talmud class in the Shtieblach of Old Katamon. Before coming to Israel, he was the founding rabbi of Young Israel of Century City, Los Angeles. He recently published a series of Hebrew language-learning apps, which are available at