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The Crown of Halacha

Purim 5776 – Hide and Seek

Hide and Seek

The first time we accepted the Torah was on Har Sinai, right after leaving Egypt. The second time we accepted the Torah was on Purim in Shushan. The two events were very different. At Har Sinai Hashem held the mountain over our nation and threatened to destroy the world if we did not accept the Torah. Our acceptance was carried out in fear. On Purim Hashem again threatened to destroy our nation through the evil Haman. However, our response was quite different than on Har Sinai. We accepted the Torah out of love rather than fear, a higher level.

These two “acceptances” seem to be reversed. When we left Egypt, we were very close to Hashem. We witnessed open miracles during the ten plagues, kriyaus yam suf, and while sojourning in the desert.  This was a time when Hashem was clearly close to us. This is when we should’ve accepted the Torah out of love.  On Purim Hashem was hidden, it was a time when we should have accepted the Torah out of fear rather than love. What was it about Purim that raised our acceptance of Torah to love? And what was lacking on Har Sinai that we only reached the level of fear?

The answer is that on Purim we had to work hard to see Hashem. When a person works hard for something he cherishes it much more. On Har Sinai, we received the Torah as a gift; we did not have to work for it. So it did not mean as much to us, in fact, we were forced to accept it.

Today we are the furthest we have ever been from Hashem, He has withdrawn His presence and is hiding behind technology, science, cell phones and computers. If we look closely at the events happening on the world stage we can see that Hashem is bringing about great changes. However, seeing Hashem will not necessarily bring us any closer to him. Working to see Hashem is how we will come to love Him.

This is what Purim means to me, it is an opportunity to reach a love of Hashem than any of the previous generations.




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