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The Chafetz Chaim Haggadah

By: Rabbi Shalom Meir Wallach

Stories, Parables, and Commentary on the Haggadah Based on the Writings of Rav Yisrael Meir Hakohen of Radin.

Although the Chafetz Chaim was on such a lofty level that we can't even fathom it, his teachings were extremely accessible. The Chafetz Chaim was known for his stories and parables, which pepper his sefarim and his many discourses, making penetrating lessons easier for anyone to understand. 

Rav Chaim Ozer Grodzensky, zt"l, said that the stories and parables of the Chafetz Chaim are like the mann that fell in the desert for Bnei Yisrael: just as every individual Jew was able to decide what his portion of mann should taste like, every individual today-man or woman, the very young or the aged- is able to glean an insight from the Chafetz Chaim's parables on his own level. A child appreciates a mashal because he enjoys a good story, and the talmid chacham appreciates the same mashal for the deep, penetrating lesson it imparts. 

This was one of the Chafetz Chaim's legacies to us: dozens of sefarim and discourses, in which he included hundreds of stories and parables to help us understand his teachings at our individual level.

In his hesped for the Chafetz Chaim, Rav Moshe Landinsky, zt"l, the rosh yeshivah of Yeshivas Radin, pointed out how the train engine pulls a string of train cars behind it with great force. If the engine would suddenly be disconnected from the rest of the cars, they would continue moving simply by momentum. But how long will they continue moving without the engine there to pull them? 

The parables, stories, and teachings in The Chafetz Chaim Haggadah are meant to draw out the force of momentum a little longer. To shine a brilliant light on the darkness of our times and enlighten us with the insights and lessons the Chafetz Chaim left behind for us. 

We may not be able to fathom his level-but we can get an understanding of his teachings through his parables and stories. The Chafetz Chaim's own words and lessons come to life in these pages, giving us a glimpse of a gadol b'Yisrael from a generation past.

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