Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Purim and World Peace

Rabbi Nachman of Breslov taught: “To the extent that there is peace in the world, mankind can be brought to serve God with a common accord.” This is why we are instructed to give charity on the holiday of Purim to anyone who opens his hand, even an idol-worshipper. A spirit of great peace prevails at this time; and our sages state: “We must sustain the poor of other nations just as we sustain our fellow Jews - for this is the way of peace.” On Purim, we may fulfill this to an even greater extent, for Mordekhai (the hero of the Purim story) was the very personification of “speaking peace” (Esther 10:3). Therefore, this is a time when we can elicit great peace, even upon the nations of the world, so that they all may return to faith in the One God (Rabbi Nosson Sternhartz, as cited in Toras Nosson: Pardes, vol. IV, Gittin, 38).