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Friday, March 22, 2019

Halachic Times (Zmanim)
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Shushan Purim
Jewish History

The battles fought between the Jews and their enemies, which took place on Adar 13 throughout the Persian empire (see "Today in Jewish History" for that date), continued for two days -- Adar 13 and 14 -- in the capital city of Shushan, where there were a greater number of Jew haters. Thus the victory celebrations in Shushan were held on the 15th of Adar, and the observance of the festival of Purim was instituted for that day in Shushan and all walled cities. (See Laws and Customs below).

On this date, in the year following the Holy Temple’s destruction, G‑d tells Ezekiel to take up a lamentation for Pharaoh, king of Egypt, and for the Jewish nation’s other enemies, foretelling their ultimate downfall.

Read the prophecy here: Ezekiel ch. 32

Laws and Customs

In cities that are surrounded by a wall dating from the days of Joshua (13th century BCE) -- a prominent example is the city of Jerusalem -- the festival of Purim is observed on the 15th of Adar (instead of the 14th), in commemoration of the fact that in the ancient walled city of Shushan, the first Purim was celebrated on this day (see "Today in Jewish History").

(For an overview of the Purim observances and links to more information, see "Laws and Customs" for Adar 14.)

Daily Thought

Because you did not serve G‑d your G‑d with joy and gladness over the abundance of everything. (Deuteronomy 28:47)

Imagine you were just bequeathed a treasury containing most of the world’s wealth.

Imagine the thrill coursing through your veins, the celebration you would throw.

That is the joy of a single mitzvah.

—Rabbi Isaac Luria, the Ari.