Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Some Thoughts on Purim

The Book Of Esther is the prototypical story of the Jews in exile throughout the centuries. As you read through it you will find themes that are painfully familiar to us.

"And Haman said to King Ahasuerus, There is a certain people scattered and separate among the peoples throughout all the provinces of your kingdom, and their ways differ from those of every people, and they do not keep the king's ways; it is therefore no use for the king to let them be. If it pleases the king, let it be written to destroy them, and I will weigh out ten thousand silver talents into the hands of those who perform the work, to bring it in to the king's treasuries".

Haman represents the individual, (or small group) that hates moral ideals so much that he can not tolerate the existence of the people who represent those ideals.

"And the king took his ring off his hand and gave it to Haman...the adversary of the Jews. And the king said to Haman, The silver is given to you and the people - to do to them as it pleases you".

The king represents all people who stand by, or even give tacit approval while the haters of morality carry out their evil plans.
It is interesting to note that in this story, the king is not as evil as Haman, but his attachment to morality is tenuous, and that is exactly what Haman is counting on. and precisely what is needed to bring his evil plans to fruition.
Without those like the king giving tacit approval or even just looking the other way, Haman would be just another marginalized extremist; another frustrated megalomaniac vainly seeking expression. It is my sincere wish that all people of the world learn this valuable lesson and take it to heart.

7 comments:

Bacon Eating Atheist Jew said...

From a morality perspective, the vengeful jealous Hebrew god is much better at teaching lessons that parallel mankind than the loving turn the other cheek Christian god.
The Hebrew stories can eternally apply to the real world.
Good writers, better than the 1500 people who wrote the NT.

Stacey said...

Great analysis! I would also add that the word "diversity" could be substituted as well.

"Haman represents the.....who hates diversity so much...

The Jewish Freak said...

Bacon: I also appreciate the literary quality of the Hebrew Bible. The NT just does not measure up in that way.

The Jewish Freak said...

Stacey: Thanks for the compliment. Certainly we see people these days who do not like diversity in thought.

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