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Holy Hamantaschen

Holy Hamantaschen

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On the surface, the Purim story is not the typical background to a Jewish festival. There are no spectacular or miraculous events. Seas don't split, oil does not burn longer than it should and water does not turn into blood. In this story, the Divine hand is not obvious. G‑d is hidden in the story and in fact His name is not even explicitly mentioned even once in the Book of Esther. It could all be misinterpreted as a successful diplomatic mission. One has to work hard to uncover and see the miraculous chain of events that brought about the salvation.

We possess the power to gain clarity even when there is confusionBut this is the power of Purim—to discover G‑d even when He is concealed. The message of Purim is that we possess the power to gain clarity even when there is confusion, see light even when it is dark and become inspired even when there are no out-of-the-ordinary events.

It is much easier to be motivated and inspired by an open miracle or Divine revelation that makes the truth completely obvious. But when we have to work it out ourselves it reflects greater commitment and is more valuable and permanent.

On other festivals we celebrate with spiritual service. The shofar, the Yom Kippur service and the Passover seder are all inspiring, uplifting, meaningful experiences. On Purim there is little spirituality, rather we celebrate in more physical ways. On Purim we can connect to our soul and to G‑d in a less obvious environment. We share food with each other, say l'chaim and eat a festive meal. On Purim we do not need to leave our mundane world to be to be uplifted—we are inspired and committed even when eating hamantaschen.

L'chaim!

Rabbi Michoel Gourarie lectures on a wide range of topics with a special emphasis on Personal Growth and Self Development, including self esteem, communication and relationship building. He is the director of "Bina" in Sydney, Australia.
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