Scroll of Esther

Banging for Haman - I find going to the synagogue on Purim to hear the Megillah an unnerving experience to say the least. Why do the children have to set off explosives and make such a ruckus at various times during the... More »
Blessings on Rabbinical Mitzvahs - On Chanukah and Purim, we say the blessing, Asher Kidishanu - "Which God has commanded us..." Yet aren't those words inappropriate, given that nowhere in the 613 mitzvahs of the Torah are these... More »
Don’t Miss a Word - I see many people in synagogue who bring their own Megillah scrolls for the reading. Is there any reason for that? I mean, shouldn’t they be quietly listening to the reader the entire time? Isn’t the... More »
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General

Hamentaschen and Haman’s Three-Cornered Hat - Is there a deeper meaning behind Haman’s 3-cornered hat? Why do we eat hamentaschen in memory of that of all things? More »
Holy Purim Day - I was told by a friend that Purim is considered the holiest day in the Jewish year. That sounds a little far-out to me. This guy likes to party a lot. Is what he’s saying true? More »
Jewish Holidays and Celebrating our Enemies’ Destruction - I have a coworker who has some pretty anti-semitic views about a lot of things. I’m not Jewish either but I’ve tried my best to defend the Jews against him. Most of his “claims” are patent nonsense and he... More »
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Fast of Esther

Eating Before Hearing the Megillah - Ta’anit Esther doesn’t end that late, but another hour goes by until the synagogue finishes the Megillah, especially with all the carrying on. This makes the fast much longer and more difficult. Is it... More »
Exemptions from Fasting - I tend to get bad headaches when I fast. Am I obligated to fast on the Fast of Esther? Likewise, I have a friend who is pregnant. What is her status? More »
Why Fast? - My daughter, a preschool teacher, has a child in her class with sickle cell anemia who is presently in the hospital. Yesterday she visited the hospital and was instrumental in cheering up the child. She... More »

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