“Rabbi Asi said: Why was EstherHeroine of the Purim story and Megillat (the scroll of) Esther. She is married to the king by her cousin Mordecai and ultimately saves her people from execution. likened to the dawn? It is to tell you: Just as the dawn is the conclusion of the entire night, so too, Esther was the conclusion of all miracles performed for the entire Jewish people.” —Yoma 29a
As the glorious colors of the dawn gently rise against night dripping in black, so must our souls shine forth in time, greeting the absence of justice with persistent presence that illuminates the dreams of the oppressed.
On PurimLit. "Lots." A carnival holiday celebrated on the 14th of the Jewish month of Adar, commemorating the Jewish victory over the Persians as told in the Book of Esther. Purim is celebrated by reading the megilla (Book of Esther), exchanging gifts, giving money to the poor, and holding a festive meal. At the megilla reading, merrymakers are dressed in costumes, people drink, and noisemakers (graggers) are sounded whenever the villain Haman's name is mentioned., we recall the limits of miracles and the power of human beings. Even in the emptiest moments, there are still defiant, holy prophets in our midst. May we find the voices of Rohingya women, children and elders, lift up their words and act how and where they need us to be in the quest for their liberation. May neither the limits of national borders nor naive self-interest prevent us from responding to their plight with clarity, audacity and vigor.
To be a Jew is to be a force that moves with the Other.
To face the bleakness of history without delay and never, not once, falling back.
Purim 5779 / 2019. In collaboration with the Jewish Rohingya Justice Network (JRJN).
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