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Purim: Why We Celebrate It And How To Commemorate It With Jewish Art

Author : Mark Etinger

Another year and another Purim. This spring, why not do something different? There is plenty of Purim art out there to help celebrate the holiday. Let's take a look at some of it, along with the symbolism and reasons for celebrating this holiday.

1. Book of Esther: The book of Esther, which celebrates Jewish power, is always read to commemorate our deliverance from evil. Esther was a Jewish queen of Persia in the fourth century B.C.E. It was not known that she was Jewish. Haman, a vizier to the king, plotted to eradicate all the Jews in the empire, but when Esther told the king of her background, he instead executed Haman. The Jews fought against all of the plotters and killed many. We read the Megillat Esther to remember Esther's bravery and courage.

2. Graggers: These are wooden noisemakers used to drown out the name of Haman. They are usually made of wood, with a handle and a wheel with another fixed piece of wood, which makes a loud clicking when spun. Some also enjoy stamping their feet loudly to block the "name of evil" during the reading of the Megillat Esther.

3. Festivities: Food is a large part of the Purim festivities. Minor fasting usually occurs before the holiday, to remember Esther's three day fast before she approached the King to tell him of her Jewishness. A fruit-filled triangular cookie called hamentaschen, or Haman's pockets, is eaten. Because this holiday celebrates life, we give baskets of food to those in need. The needy include the poor and charity organizations, as well as friends and neighbors.

4. Drinking: There is also wine drunk during the feasting. In the Talmud, we are supposed to drink unto we don't know the difference between "cursed be Haman" and "blessed be Mordecai." You should not drink until you are sick, however.

5. Purim Art: A Megillah scroll is a beautiful addition to any celebration. These objects of Purim art are often of a limited edition and can be fully illustrated. There are many variations on the Megillah scroll because different artists add their own unique variations to the classic Purim story. Also look into a Megillah scroll stand to keep it on display during the holiday.

Purim is celebrated in the twelfth month, Adar, at sundown on the thirteenth day. It is a fun holiday, full of parties, drinking, and other celebratory observances. This year, think about what you can do differently to celebrate this holiday. Give baskets of food to your friends and the needy, drink wine with your loved ones, and make the addition of a beautiful Megillah scroll to your home.

Author's Resource Box features exclusive Jewish art and paintings by Israeli artists. Our authentic Judaica pieces include beautiful ketubahs and wedding gifts, as well as paintings, prayers and blessings, and other creations perfect for Rosh Hashana and the other Jewish High Holidays.

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Tags:   purim, megillat esther, megilat esther, esther purim, book of esther, megillah scroll, purim art, jewish art, Ketubah, Ketubahs

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Submitted : 2011-02-27    Word Count : 1    Times Viewed: 832