This week was the Jewish holiday Purim and there is pretty much no holy day more fun to celebrate.
But this year I learned about the deeper meanings in this holiday and I am still reeling from it.
Up until this year, I thought Purim was just a kids holiday, full of costumes and hamentaschen cookies, parades and carnivals. Screaming and sounding off graggers as we read the megillah.
I knew that on this holiday we were obliged to drink until we could not tell the difference between Haman and Mordechai but it all seemed in good fun.
Now I see some powerful importance underlying this holiday. Here are the themes.
3. The yin and yang of life
The word Purim means lots - as in a lottery. But we know that what happens in our lives is not random. Events are shaped by the hand of our creator, not randomness and this ties in with number 2.
In the megillah, nowhere is our creator overtly mentioned because he is hidden. This is one reason we wear masks on Purim. His hand is certainly at play but not in the usual biblical way of an open miracle. And this means that we must exercise our Faith muscle.
The unwavering belief that our creator has a hand in our lives and our willingness to move forward in faith without any signs, no matter how we may shake in our boots as we do it, creates a deep, unbreakable relationship.
As one Rabbi put it, if you want to be friends with Obama right now, it might be a little hard. But if you were a real friend to him 15 years ago and kept it up, well, you are probably working in the White House right now.
Number 3 is even trickier to talk about, but on Purim we remember that our circumstances can flip in an instant. One small move and you are no longer Queen, or the gallows for your enemy become your own. One small move and everything changes.
It is fascinating to me that we rejoice so loudly and wildly on this holiday in possession of such deep, serious undertones. And yet, it makes perfect sense.
So Tuesday night was a delicious Purim meal and I can't tell you how amazing the food was. Normally, being the big cheese head that I am, I don't get why people choose to have meat meals. But man was the food delicious.
These are deli rolls and I can't wait to make them for my family.
I don't have the recipe for this chicken yet, but my daughter and I ate a ton of it.
There were many other food items at this feast, I thought I took more pictures, but clearly I was busy stuffing my face, drinking, laughing, singing and enjoying the outstanding company.