Standing Before the King

On Pesach, we must not forget the importance of prayer. We have תפילת טל, the prayer for dew, on the first day of Pesach. And we have a big emphasis on Hallel. We say Hallel as part of Maariv on Friday night and it is a major part of the Haggadah.

Rashi in מסכת ברכות makes an interesting distinction between שמע and שמונה עשרה. He says that שמונה עשרה is like standing before the King in conversation, with fear and trepidation. שמע is an affirmation of our faith in G-d but is not a conversation with G-d. Therefore, שמע can even be said while lying in bed, which is not the case by שמונה עשרה.

On Pesach, the entire nation went to the King’s house to converse with Him. We must not forget this aspect of the holiday. We are to be elevated by the prayers and connection with Hashem, similar to how we stand before the King each time we say שמונה עשרה.