Is It Appropriate To Rejoice This Purim?

Friday, 22 March, 2024 - 12:40 am

This year Purim presents a major dilemma; are we allowed to rejoice and be happy considering the circumstances in Israel? How can we celebrate knowing that hostages are being held in Gaza? How can we be happy when thousands of our brothers and sisters are putting their lives on the line in combat to defend Jewish life? How can we rejoice while 100,000 thousand Israeli households are in a state of evacuation?

On the other hand, can we afford not to rejoice and celebrate? Can the world stand for a reduction in positivity that is produced by our Purim joy? In fact, one could argue that we must rejoice twice as much to make up for those hostages, combat soldiers, and evacuees that may not be able to celebrate this year in the way they are accustomed.

Perhaps we could distinguish between frivolity and joy driven by holiness and substance. My senior colleague, Dr. David Kaufmann OBM would encourage college students to come to Chabad for holidays so they could “party for the heaven of it” rather than for the “...of it.”

How indeed do we party for the heaven of it? One of the Chassidic life hacks for this issue is called a Farbrengen. A farbrengen consists of a joyous camaraderie infused with caring and inspiration. It is a coming together of souls to share in each other’s joy and striving for a better life. Loving and uplifting words are imparted in an atmosphere of brotherhood, accompanied by melodies that can lift the feet or cause the heart to soar.

A central feature of a Chassidic Purim is a Farbrengen. This year more than ever, we need to lean in and access these opportunities for elevated rejoicing. Purim 2024 with Chabad will offer ample opportunities for Farbrengens. Beginning with Saturday night after the Megillah reading. Continuing with a Sunday morning breakfast Farbrengen. Finally, Purim in the Circus at Slater Torah Academy will round out this very important Purim celebration.

I encourage you to join one or all of these events and party for the heaven of it this Purim. We look forward to celebrating with you!

Shabbat Shalom and Happy Purim
Rabbi Mendel Rivkin

Comments on: Is It Appropriate To Rejoice This Purim?
There are no comments.