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The Purim Hangover

Friday, 9 March, 2012 - 3:55 pm

Many have the custom to drink a few extra L’chaim’s on Purim. Certainly if one were to fulfill the Talmud’s encouragement to drink excessively on Purim they would no doubt experience a serious hangover. But even if you celebrated Purim in a way that would allow you to go back to work the next day, you should still experience a hangover – figuratively speaking.

You see, Purim may be behind us but its message is continuously relevant. Like in our time, the story of Purim took place when earth shattering miracles and awesome prophetic vision was no longer the norm (as it had been in the days of the Exodus from Egypt).

Like in the days of Mordechai and Esther, we have to peel away the layers and discover the miraculous within the mundane. And just as they recognized their blessings in four ways, we too should incorporate these ideas in our lives.

On Purim we fulfill four mitzvahs: we read the megillah; we give gifts of food to one another; we give tzedakah to the poor and we enjoy a festive meal. If we were to incorporate these ideas in our day to day life, we would be much happier and more fulfilled.

On Purim we recount the story of Hashem’s miracles in the megillah, in our lives we should recognize the hand of G-d that we experience daily – from getting out of bed in the morning to those occasions where we "just missed" getting into a car accident or the like.

On Purim we give gifts of food to each other and gifts to the poor, in our lives let's recognize our abundant blessings by sharing with others. And on Purim we gather together with family and friends for a festive meal, let's gather with others to celebrate this wonderful – miraculous – experience called life.

L’chaim!

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