This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Purim Essay

1681 words - 7 pages


Mordechai and Esther, with the approval of the Rabbis of the time,
introduced a mitzvas assei(1) which obligates every person to send two
different kinds of foods to one friend on Purim. Two basic reasons are given
for this mitzvah:
There are impoverished people who are too embarrassed to collect tzedakah
for themselves and will therefore not have food for the seudas Purim. By
establishing a system whereby everyone receives packages of food on Purim,
the rabbis ensured that even the most reticent of individuals will have food
for the Purim seudah(2).
Sending food to a friend or an acquaintance is an expression of goodwill and
fraternity. On Purim we wish to instill and perpetuate these feelings(3).

The goals of both of these reasons must be met in order to fulfill the
mitzvah properly. For instance: One who sends clothing for mishloach manos
does not fulfill the mitzvah(4) since he did nothing for his friend's Purim
meal. Similarly, one who sends mishloach manos anonymously does not fulfill
the mitzvah(5) since no friendship or goodwill is generated between him and
the recipient.

Nowadays, we are witness to a marked proliferation of mishloach manos.
Although mishloach manos is a relatively easy mitzvah to fulfill, if one is
unaware of the halachos, he could send dozens of mishloach manos and still
not properly fulfill the mitzvah. In addition, a clear distinction must be
drawn between the minimum requirements for fulfilling the mitzvah, and the
hiddur mitzvah, the more exacting form of fulfilling the mitzvah. There are
also some little known halachos which are important for those who wish to
fulfill the mitzvah according to the views of all the poskim. We have thus
split the halachos into two parts - the first part discusses the basic
rules, and the second part discusses chumros and hiddurim for those who wish
to embellish upon this once-a-year mitzvah.


1. Who should send: Men and women are personally obligated in this
mitzvah(6). Married women are obligated in their own right and are not
exempted by their husband's mishloach manos(7). It is sufficient, however,
for husband and wife to send mishloach manos together, as if it is coming
from both of them - and the recipient recognizing that it is coming from

Some poskim hold that children over 13 - even those who are being supported
by their parents - are obligated(9), while others exempt them since they do
not own anything in their own right(10).

Parents should educate their children in the mitzvah of mishloach manos as
they do with every mitzvah(11).

2. What to send: Any combination of two kinds of food(12), or one food and
one drink(13), or two kinds of drink(14), is sufficient. Two pieces of the
same food are considered as one food(15). Some poskim(16) specify that the
foods be ready to eat and require no further cooking, while others(17) allow
even uncooked foods to be sent.


Find Another Essay On Purim

College Application Essay Highlighting the Importance of Diversity

619 words - 2 pages allotted for the answer. With the success of my prior artifice, I decided to ask my Jewish friend for help, who also succeeded in providing me with the correct answer, "Purim". An everyday, although difficult, crossword puzzle helped me realize how important it is to be surrounded by diverse people. Not only can they help you solve crossword puzzles, but you can learn about various other cultures with the simple act of communication. Later, I

Final Project: UNESCO Paper

1996 words - 8 pages their eyes and to write them on their doorstoops. This prayer is the reason for wearing the prayer boxes on the arm and forehead and for placing prayer boxes on their doors. (Rossel, 2008)There are many holy days in Judaism. They are called feasts and festivals. Some of the more commonly known feasts and festivals are Rash Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Passover, Hanukkah or Chanukah, and Purim. Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish New year; this lasts ten days

A Report on Esther

2944 words - 12 pages of a feast (Purim), which has endured over 2,000 years because of one woman, whose name the book is titled, said, “If I perish… I perish.” Moreover, Esther is a story of courage and communication displayed in the life of two people: Esther and Mordecai. Author and Date The author of this book remains unknown. However, the author was probably a Jew, both from the purpose of the book in accounting for the origin of the Jewish festival Purim and

Esther in the Bible

2449 words - 10 pages The book of Esther tells the faithfulness of one woman and her uncle. It is only one of two books that contain the heroism and bravery of a woman heroine. The story of Esther accomplishes two profound things, the first: “To demonstrate God’s providential care of his people, even those outside the land of Israel, and 2) to commend the observance of the feast of Purim by relating how it originated” (Breneman 289).Unlike the rest of the Bible the

Book of Esther

2142 words - 9 pages Executed (7:8-10)The Counter-Edict Is Issued (8:1-17)Esther Introduces Mordecai to the King (8:1)Mordecai Receives the Signet Ring Previously Worn By Haman (8:2)Esther Gives Haman's Property to Mordecai (8:3-8)Mordecai Writes the Counter-Edict (8:9-17)The Day of Conflict Arrives (9:1-19)The Jews Kill Many, Including Haman's Ten Sons (9:1-10)Esther Asks for Their Bodies to Be Displayed and for a Second Day of Killing in Susa (9:11;19)Purim Is

Judaism Explained

1554 words - 6 pages or early February. In Israel, Jews plant trees on Tu B'Shvat. Purim is a festive Jewish holiday that celebrates Jewish survival. On Purim Jews celebrate how Queen Esther saved the Jews of Persia from genocide. Passover celebrates the birth of the Jewish nation. This holiday commemorates the exodus from Egypt of the Jews.10. Judaism today: According to Lisa Katz in an essay published online by, Judaism today is a monotheistic religion

Judaism Information

2844 words - 11 pages use the occasion to heighten their own awareness on the fragility of the environment and the individual responsibility to serve and protect the earth. Purim is a celebratory holiday that commemorates the saving of the Jews of Persia by the will of Queen Esther. Jews celebrate Purim, a time for joy, silliness, and costumes, by reading from Megillat Esther, the scroll of Esther, which tells them the story of how Esther and her uncle Mordechai saved

Portrayals Of Women In The Old Testament

2333 words - 9 pages story of Esther, shown by the use of the word Pur. Pur, which is translated into Hebrew by Goral "lot" and the word itself, is Hebraized by adding the plural termination -im to it. This became henceforth the name of a Jewish feast, which has been celebrated annually ever since as Purim" (Osterley134). This is the celebration, two days of remembering a time they almost perished and why they didn't. Owing doubtless to its very secular character, there

Festivals as Ways to Learn About Faith

5302 words - 21 pages meal times. Food eaten during this festival is traditionally fried in oil and a child would learn the symbolism of this. During Jewish history Judas lit a lamp with a day's oil in it and it lasted eight days, which was a miracle, and this is the symbolism of the oil. Purim is a very enjoyable festival for young children because it includes a fancy dress party for children but involves learning a lot about their

Hebron Massacre

1055 words - 4 pages , while other Talmudic settlers embraced Goldstein as a hero and great martyr.In the events that preceded the Hebron Massacre, one can only speculate on the reasons why it happened and what lead up to it, but it is highly speculated that the day before Dr. Goldstein was inside the Mosque attending a reading of the Scroll of Esther, which is part of Purim, when a group of Arab youths yelled "itbah al-yahud", which means, "slaughter the Jews

bible as literature, the old testament - cal state fullerton CPLT 312 - essay

1264 words - 6 pages these days Purim after the name of Pur” (Esther 9:25-26). Esther and Mordecai realized that to save their people, Esther would have to go before the king and plead for their lives. This was a dangerous task because no one was to go before the king without being summoned. Esther asked that the people fast and pray for three days. The fasting and prayers of the people gave the queen the courage to do what she needed to do. When she told the king of

Similar Essays

Bible's Book Of Esther Is Full Of Mysteries

1215 words - 5 pages give a historical background for the reason and celebration of Purim. Esther exhorts its audiences that God is in control even if the situation seems impossible. The text reveals that God is above fate, coincidences and situations. Esther is read during the Feast of Purim by the Jewish populace to honour and remember the joy of the victory of their forefathers over their oppressors. The story of Esther is a historical account regarding the Jews

The Trial Of God Essay

1119 words - 4 pages play influenced by the Jewish holiday of Purim would shape some literary elements in the Trial of God (Brown vii). Elie Wiesel’s the Trial of God is a play that is separated into three different acts that covers the developing storyline. The play takes place in the year 1649 in the city of Shamogrod, Ukraine. The first act of the trial of god lays the foundation for Wiesel to introduce main characters and the starting place for the mock trial

The Book Of Esther Essay

1773 words - 8 pages The Book of Esther is about a Jewish queen of Persia who exposed a plot to destroy her people and thus saved all the Jews in that country from destruction (Esther 3:11). The purpose of The Book of Esther is to display the work of God. The Book of Esther records the feast of Purim and it commemorates the great deliverance of the Jewish nation. In the process of analyzing The Book of Esther, the journey into the three worlds will be used. Overall

Judaism: Family Traditions, Rituals And History

1534 words - 6 pages being.Judaism has many kinds of celebration and holidays the observe which include; The Month of Tishri, Rosh Hashanah, Days of Awe, Yom Kippur, Sukkoth, Simhart Torah, Hanukkah, Tu b' Sherat, Purim, Passover, The counting of Omer, Shavu'ot, Tisha B'Av, Minor Fast and Hanukkah. One of the important days at the time of The Jewish year is Rosh Hashanah. It reminds the Jews how God made the world. It is also the beginning of the solemn time of the year