Just wondering if Torah sources have any answer to the world's most timeless and compelling question: why did the chicken cross the road?

This question is Purim Torah and is not intended to be taken completely seriously. See the Purim Torah policy.

  • 3
    Nafka mina: was it a melacha she'eina tzricha legufaH ...
    – Shalom
    Commented Mar 18 at 0:36
  • It was a glitch in the matrix. 馃惀馃悿馃崡馃悢.
    – Pycm
    Commented Mar 18 at 15:16
  • I don't see how this question is on-topic.
    – msh210
    Commented Mar 18 at 20:56
  • @msh210 good point
    – Rabbi Kaii
    Commented Mar 18 at 21:59
  • 2
    @msh210 doesn't it fall under "apply a distinctly Torah style (e.g. Talmudic analysis) to an irrelevant topic"?
    – Harel13
    Commented Mar 18 at 22:21

5 Answers 5


This is one of four riddles that the wisest of all men was unable to solve (Proverbs 30:18-19):

砖职讈诇止砖指讈讛 讛值诪指旨讛 谞执驻职诇职讗讜旨 诪执诪侄旨谞执旨讬 讜讗专讘注 [讜职讗址专职讘指旨注指讛] 诇止讗 讬职讚址注职转执旨讬诐. 讚侄旨专侄讱职 讛址谞侄旨砖侄讈专 讘址旨砖指旨讈诪址讬执诐 讚侄旨专侄讱职 谞指讞指砖讈 注植诇值讬 爪讜旨专 讚侄旨专侄讱职 讗殖谞执讬指旨讛 讘职诇侄讘 讬指诐 讜职讚侄专侄讱职 讙侄旨讘侄专 讘职旨注址诇职诪指讛.鈥

Three things are beyond me, and the fourth I don't know:
Why did the eagle cross the sky?
Why did the snake cross the rock?
Why did the ship cross the sea?
Why did the rooster cross the road with a hen?


The midrash explains that the chicken* is actually Avraham Avinu.

As we learn in the commentaries to the Haggadah, Avraham, by choosing Hashem, "stood on the other side", i.e. the other side of the world, who all bowed to idols. And hence the name Ivri (Hebrew), i.e. "other sider".

Why did the chicken cross the road? To get to the other side.

* the original formulation, scholars believe, had "dove" (see this Radak on Bereshit 15:9), and also it wasn't a road, but a river (see the opening of Maggid in the Passover Haggadah)


to get to the Alter Cocker-doodle Doo.


I think that this was a translation error - I think that the original question involved a rooster and not a chicken. As for the answer, he had a girsa about the end of Pirkei Avot 2:5 that read

讜旨讘职诪指拽讜止诐 砖讈侄讗值讬谉 讙旨侄讘侄专讬诐, 讛执砖讈职转旨址讚旨值诇 诇执讛职讬讜止转 讙旨侄讘侄专

instead of

讜旨讘职诪指拽讜止诐 砖讈侄讗值讬谉 讗植谞指砖讈执讬诐, 讛执砖讈职转旨址讚旨值诇 诇执讛职讬讜止转 讗执讬砖讈

which he likely got from the girsa of Bar Kappara as translated by b a in the comment below:

讘旨址讗植转址专 讚旨职诇值讬转 讙旨职讘址专 鈥 转旨址诪旨指谉 讛直讜值讬 讙旨职讘址专.

In a place where there is no rooster, there you should be, O rooster

So it must be, therefore, that there was simply no one on the other side of the road.

  • 1
    Your conjecture is right on track, this is the girsa of Bar Kappara: 讘讗转专 讚诇讬转 讙讘专 转诪谉 讛讜讬 讙讘专 "In a place where there is no rooster, there you should be, O rooster" (Berachot 63a)
    – b a
    Commented Mar 18 at 17:17

The question is obviously existential, and therefore you already knew the answer before you asked the question.

As Rav Berg put it so eloquently in his book, Kabbalah for the Layman,

鈥淔rom the kabbalistic perspective, that which is infinite and eternal is real and that which is finite, including this world and all that is a part of it, is illusion.鈥

Wisdom calls to us from Proverbs 8:17

"I love them that love me, And those that seek me earnestly shall find me."

The path is manifest by the intent of the seeker.

The bottom line is: there is no road.

There is only the need in the mind of the creation to seek elevation to the Creator. And toward that need, the road materializes.

  • 2
    The second bottom line is: There is no chicken either. Anyone can confirm this when hungry. Commented Mar 19 at 2:30

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