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  • Writer's pictureRabbi David Paskin

Purim and Passover Jews

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From Rabbi David

Over the holiday I learned a beautiful piece of Torah that I wanted to share. It suggests that there are two kinds of Jews: Purim Jews and Passover Jews.

Purim Jews are animated by the command to never forget Amalek and all those who seek to do us harm. Purim Jews are always looking out for threats. They live in a constant state of fear. Passover Jews focus on the command to diminish our joy at the suffering of our enemies. Passover Jews are all about empathy and understanding.

I've always thought of myself as a Passover Jew - I always seek out the light, the goodness, the hope and the empathy. More and more though, I've found myself feeling like a bit of a Purim Jew - as anti-semitism has risen again and Israel continues to find itself embroiled in turmoil both from within and without.

Of course, I know that we must be a little bit of both. We must be on guard and hopeful; afraid and empathetic. Perhaps this is the lesson of these two holidays that have just passed: Never give up hope and never turn a blind eye. Always be aware and always be loving. Such a balancing act we Jews must navigate!

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