Monday, March 14, 2011

Don’t Wait for Purim to Make Some Noise!

My ears are ringing and my knees and feet ache in anticipation of Purim. I can hear the grogger’s bass staccato and I can feel the vibrations in my legs as I stamp my feet as we work as a community, as a people, to blot out the name of Haman.

Purim, the most joyous holiday on the Jewish calendar, is the story of Mordechai and his cousin, Queen Esther who thwarted an attempt by the Prime Minister of Ancient Persia, Haman, to exterminate the Jewish people. When the story of Purim is read every year at this time it is underlined by the blotting out of Haman’s name through the use of groggers, foot stomping, and booing.

The joyous, and sometimes raucous, celebration is a community act. No one acts alone. Everyone works together and supports each other, to turn the voices of many into one to make one collective noise.

However, beyond these community gatherings of support and joy, the voice of the Jewish people is shattered. I am not talking about the differences between the Reform, Conservative, Orthodox, etc. communities but of a more fundamental and deeper chasm… supporting Israel.

Purim is a time when we should recognize what we can do as a people. We can’t just sit around and stuff ourselves with Hamentashen, we must rally to support our homeland, we must speak with one voice, we must stomp our feel and blot out the accusations being made against our home. Whether it is by writing, by praying, by making Aliyah, make your voice heard!

We all need to regularly show our admiration for those who live in the land that G-d has granted to us, support for those in the IDF who protect us and defend our right to exist as a people and our right to a homeland, and respect for the holy men who pray for us all and carry on the traditions that many take for granted.

We live many different kinds of lives but we are one people with one home. We all want peace and we will all fight for peace because no one should live in a home being torn apart by conflict or partitions. We must ensure that we will not be cast out into the Diaspora again to be gripped with the longing to return and the inability to do so. We need to ensure that we and all our future generations have a place to call home! We need to make some noise!

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