This week we will celebrate Purim, a holiday that the Rabbis tell us will continue to be celebrated even after the coming of Moshiach while other holidays will no longer be observed. Why does Purim have this unique quality of permanence?
There may be many reasons but there are a couple that quickly come to mind.
One is that throughout the entire Megillah G-d’s name is never once mentioned. G-d is hidden, so to speak, but He is nevertheless very present, pulling strings, orchestrating events that appear as our enemies will annihilate us but in the end are really setting the stage for their own downfall. We see this graphically as Haman’s sons are hung on the very gallows they had erected for Mordechai the Jew.
The other lesson to be learned is that events must be seen in the broader picture of time. The Purim story in the Megillah is over an almost thirteen year time period. Redemption comes; but first it must go through a process.
As a child on the run from the Nazis after losing my entire family, what kept me going, what kept me from losing hope were my mother’s words, “Live, Remember, Tell the World” – words that gave me not only strength but hope that despite the darkness that had descended on the world, I would survive and triumph over the evil that had murdered my family and stolen my childhood. There were times when it appeared that “bad” incidents turned out to be blessings – events that actually aided me in my survival.
Last week, we read from the Torah to “not forget” Amalek, the ancestor of Haman and his descendants. This week we remember that G-d is always present in our lives, even during the darkest times even when those times seem like forever. Keeping this perspective is the essence of the Jew – our acknowledgement, our deep faith and belief of our eternal bond with G-d. That is why Purim will always be celebrated by Jews throughout the world for all time.