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Friday, 12 February 2010

Purim 2010 and sale!!

Purim is one of the most joyous and fun holidays on the Jewish calendar. It commemorates a time when the Jewish people living in Persia were saved from extermination because of the evil Haman. Purim is celebrated on the 14th day of Adar, which is usually in March but this year at the end of February. The word “Purim” means “lots” and refers to the lottery that Haman used to choose the date for the massacre. The primary commandment related to Purim is to hear the reading of the book of Esther.

The story of Purim is told in the Biblical book of Esther. The heroes of the story are Esther, a beautiful young Jewish woman living in Persia, and her cousin Mordecai, who raised her as if she were his daughter. Esther was taken to the house of Ahasuerus, King of Persia, to become part of his harem, and he loved her more than his other women and made her queen. But the king did not know that Esther was a Jew, because Mordecai told her not to reveal her nationality.

The villain of the story is Haman, an arrogant, egotistical advisor to the king. Haman hated Mordecai because Mordecai refused to bow down to Haman, so Haman plotted to destroy the Jewish people. In a speech that is all too familiar to Jews, Haman told the king, “There is a certain people scattered abroad and dispersed among the peoples in all the provinces of thy kingdom; and their laws are diverse from those of every people; neither keep they the king's laws; therefore it does not profit the king to suffer them.” Esther 3:8. The king gave the fate of the Jewish people to Haman, to do as he pleased to them. Haman planned to exterminate all of the Jews.

Mordecai persuaded Esther to speak to the king on behalf of the Jewish people. This was a dangerous thing for Esther to do, because anyone who came into the king's presence without being summoned could be put to death, and she had not been summoned. Esther fasted for three days to prepare herself, then went into the king. He welcomed her. Later, she told him of Haman's plot against her people. The Jewish people were saved, and Haman was hanged on the gallows that had been prepared for Mordecai. (quoted from here)

We are also commanded to eat, drink and be merry. In addition, we are commanded to send out gifts of food or drink, and to make gifts to charity. The sending of gifts of food and drink is referred to as misloah manot (lit. sending out portions). The kids exchange such gifts in their class also. Among Ashkenazic Jews, a common treat at this time of year is hamentaschen (lit. Haman's pockets). These triangular poppy seed cookies are supposed to represent Haman's three-cornered hat.
It is customary to hold carnival-like celebrations on Purim, to perform plays, parades and parodies and have dress up parties at school.

Yael decided she wanted to be Hermione, from the Harry Potter movies. Of course right now there is nothing of the Potter movies in the stores, but with a bit of fantasy it worked out all right.

Supplies:
  • one meter of darkgrey fabric for the pleated skirt
  • a small piece of darkred fabric for the tie
  • yellow ribbon to stitch on the fabric for the tie (I could not find any striped fabric). My mom sewed this together fantastic!
  • a darkgrey V-neck pullover to borrow (this one is a man size M, but it worked out more or less)
  • a white shirt
  • white socks or if it's cold a black woolen tights
  • black shoes
  • a heavy book
  • and optional a plastic magic wand

The scarf is my old university scarf ( I graduated in 1988 so it's quite old)
and the heraldic emblem of Gryffindor I printed from the internet and attached with double sided tape.















I have a CU Purim pack in store for Purim kits or cards etc, commercial use and my store will be on sale 20% till Purim!!! (starts tonight till feb 27). Happy Purim!




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2 happy thoughts:

Anisah said...

Is that when Esther was the Queen? Sorry I'm not good at history!

Anisah

Anisah said...

Sorry, I didn't read the whole thing lol. Esther was always my favorite bible story.