Esther’s Purim Part One
Transcribed and Prepared by Anna Beller: We will begin by reviewing ideas from previous Shiurim: We said that Esther was the work of the culmination of Moshe, and the Jews did no accept the oral law until the time of Esther, and with Moshe they accepted the written law and it would be explained to them in greater detail what was expected of them in the specific situation. But they didn’t want to play with the oral law because it was too great a responsibility and it didn’t provide the same kind of joy to them where it would be explained to them what to do and they would know what they were doing was right, when they made a judgment call and using those instincts and feeling.
Esther somehow managed to get the Jewish people to accept the oral law. We went into that it seems that Moshe’s failures are tied into the success of Amalek. And Amalek were the ancestors of Haman. Therefore all the failings we find in Moshe are the strengths of Amalek and vice versa. If we find out what the strengths of Moshe were we can figure out how to defeat Amalek. That’s how we begin.
We went into the difference of the approach of Amalek and that of the Jewish people to life. The first thing we had to understand is that they are not diametrically opposed. So that the Gemara says the difference between Amalek and the Jewish people is as thin as a hair. Its not that one believes in chance and the other doesn’t. It’s that Amalek believes that God doesn’t have control of the world and the Jews do believe that God has control of the world. And I think we proved it by showing how Hamman drew lots and the lots meant something to him, the whole symbolism of the horse. The whole idea of why they want a horse and being led, or leading the horse is whether you have control over life or not. Basically where we left off is the argument of Amalek.
Amalek says they think its just fantastic the opportunities and creativity for chance that God creates in the world. Its fantastic, God provides the most unbelievable opportunities for people to express themselves, make choices, be creative bring color to the world. It’s great. But the fact is its all a fraud because their whole idea of saying that I am going to be creating, and create my own life and use the element of chance in the world doesn’t mean anything, God’s going to get out of the world what he wants any way. So why are you telling me that there’s no chance in the world and you have to take advantage of it, why are you telling me that I have to be creative. It’s all a game! God’s going to get out of me whatever He wants from me, He’s in total control. Therefore I refuse to play along with God.
I will, number one, use God’s total control against Him. He will choose when I will kill the Jews, I will not even change it even if the day is a year from now, and the Jews then have the opportunity to defend themselves, I still will use that day. And He’s going to, and God makes the lottery fall on the birthday of Moshe. So I think the only thing to do is to forget about God. Because if you believe in God all the creativity is gone.
In fact there’s a Gemara in Sanhedrin which Rabba says to his student: “listen you guys are learning Torah and you guys are miserable because your just sitting and learning Torah. The fact that your lives are miserable look at the way you live and you observe, means that this life is hell. But let me tell you with the way you learn and observe your Mitzvot, you won’t be going to the world to come, olam habah, you will be going to hell because that’s not the way God wants you to learn, or keep the mitzvoth, your not suing it in the right way. Your living in hell in this world, convinced that you’re very righteous, and you’re going to be going to hell in the next world because you didn’t use the Torah the way you were supposed to use the Torah. So you known what forget about the Torah, at least you will be able to enjoy this world.”
This is what Amalek says, God’s going to get out of me whatever He wants so I’m not going to listen to God and do what I want.
Remember we tied it into the snake. We also pointed out that the whole issue of chance, or that which is fixed is represented between the difference between men and women. Right? Men produce millions of cells, chance, and the fact that you work for semen is chance, and women produce one, which is fixed, stays, then dies and replaces itself that which represents, what’s fixed. We spoke about the adonim, the master and the hatzi-shekel how it ties into the story of Purim. And how the story of Purim is about men and women.
Achashveirosh wanted to exert his power over his wife Vashti. And Vashti didn’t want to listen to him, so Achashveirosh has her killed. After he has her killed he brings in Esther. And he looks for the wimpiest woman he can find. He brings in this wimpy woman who turns out to be far more assertive, than any one else he thought of before. And the poor guy, we know his issue is woman, because he sends out a message that every man should rule over his own house. Which is how the Gemara says it, when the announcement came out to kill the Jews under Achashveriosh, they laughed at it because last letter they received from Achashveirosh was that every man is in charge of their own house. So they felt that any man who wrote that is an idiot, and we don’t even have to read his mail. So most people never even read this announcement.