Spiritual Tools-Fast of Esther-Replacing Fasting
The disciples asked the Baal Shem Tov, “What is the main method of devotion to God? We know from our teachers that since ancient times, men of deed would fast from Shabbat to Shabbat. But you have done away with such fasts, saying that anyone who engages in such activities will have to answer for it in judgment. You said that he is called a sinner because he makes himself suffer. This being true, what is the main way of serving God?”
The Baal Shem Tov replied, “In my opinion, a person must devote himself to three things:
Love of God
Love of Israel
Love of Torah
If a person does this, he need not afflict himself.” (Butzina deNehorah 17)
We should focus on the Baal Shem Tov’s instructions when fasting on the Fast of Esther.