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This also explains why Purim is one of the most joyous festivals of the year. Because when we realize that nothing is as it seems, that there is so much more to life than what our naked eyes may see, that G-d is always in charge, even when reality may not show it - then we can begin to appreciate life and relish its hidden blessings.

Rabbi Allouche

People say that “seeing is believing.” Judaism, however, begs to differ.

Our eyes cannot always see – and grasp – the full scope of that which they are focused on. We may be blessed with a 20/20 eyesight, but our vision will, almost always, remain limited. 

This is why we dress up on Purim, which falls in one week (on the eve of Thursday, February 25 and on the day of Friday, February 26). Because on Purim, nothing is as it seems:

Achashverosh, the all-powerful king ruling over 127 countries, turned out to be a paranoid man suffering from deep insecurities (-isn’t that so often the case of dictators and their peers?)

Haman the king adviser’s who issued the first Final solution in Jewish history, vanished as quickly as he appeared.

Queen Esther, the timid queen, who concealed her Jewish identity, emerges as a witty politician, who orchestrates redemption for her people.

And how about G-d, who so masterfully, brings about such an impressive miracle? He is not even mentioned in the story of Purim, and the miracle of Purim is shrouded in the garments of “coincidence” and “good fortune.”

This also explains why Purim is one of the most joyous festivals of the year. Because when we realize that nothing is as it seems, that there is so much more to life than what our naked eyes may see, that G-d is always in charge, even when reality may not show it – then we can begin to appreciate life and relish its hidden blessings.

It’s hard to believe that almost a year has elapsed ever since we were exposed to the novel “coronavirus” that erupted in China in November of 2019, and disrupted the lives of 7.7 billion people.

The negative effects are evident. Many have lost their jobs. Others have fallen into the abyss of despair and depression. Some have suffered the worst of all — the passing of their loved ones.

Nonetheless, and in spite of the pain and suffering, we must also acknowledge that this pandemic has produced many positive results. Families, who were now forced to spend more time with each other, solidified and strengthened their inherent bond, like never before. Relationships were repaired. Acts of kindness, particularly toward so many individuals who are quarantined alone, are increased multifold.

But above all, this pandemic has shifted our perspective on life itself. Suddenly, we have come to the realization that our physical senses are deceptive. What we had perceived as certain — the comfort of our homes, the security of our jobs, the health of our physical body — has become so uncertain. What our physical senses thought was true, has been revealed as so untrue.

We now understand, perhaps more than ever before, the ever-relevant message of Purim: That there is so much that exists beyond all that we see, smell, hear, taste, and touch. And the only senses that are truly reliable and trustworthy are our spiritual and intangible senses.

In some magical way, these spiritual senses have now taught us to recognize that even as we found ourselves “alone” at home, God, and the love and affection of our loved ones, are still with us. Even when people die “alone”, their good deeds and many merits are with them, and scores of angels accompany them from this world to the next.

A few years ago, a riveting inscription was found on the walls of a cellar in Cologne, Germany, where Jews were hiding from the Nazis. It read: “I believe in the sun, even when it isn’t shining. I believe in love, even when I am alone. I believe in G-d, even when He is silent.”

So friends, on this festival of Purim, let us throw away our misconceptions and restricting beliefs, and celebrate G-d’s revealed – and hidden – blessings in every moment, in every person, in every place, and in every situation.