Oh, Happy Month
Happiness is my theme this month, it seems, and spreading it is my goal.
Why am I so happy in Springtime?
We just celebrated the holiday of Purim last weekend. Purim is the holiday of happiness, so let’s look there at what happiness is.
Did you know Purim is the holiest day of the Jewish year? Not Yom Kipur – when we wear white and fast and pray in synagogue all day. Nope, that is not the holiest day of the year, although one would think it is from all the praying.
Nope, Purim – that is the holiest day of the year. Why? And what do we do on Purim that shows the pure glee that comes with the day?
Well, on Purim, the Jews, who had already received the Bible years before in the desert, were able to fully accept the Bible now, now that they knew and understood and lived with it for all those years. It was a true and full acceptance in a way that could not be done before they had fully experienced what it was to live by the laws and ways of the Torah.
That is one reason for the joy and holiness of the day.
Another reason is the saving of the Jews from mass genocide by the hands of the wicked Haman who had decreed a day of slaughter of the Jews in Achashveirosh’s territory – at that time the massive empire that ruled most of the world. Jews were headed toward annihilation, and Esther the Queen and Mordechai were the conduits to their salvation. A true redemption was experienced by the Jewish people as a whole.
And how do we celebrate this day? While we are not commanded to be happy, the theme of not just the day but of the whole month of Adar is Happiness. “Whoever enters Adar, his happiness will be raised.” So, we dress up in fun costumes. We eat a grand meal with family and friends. We drink wine and make merry. We read the story of Esther and Mordechai and the great redemption we experienced as a nation. And we go around to friends and loved ones and give out gift baskets. We give charity to the poor on this day, so that they, too, can celebrate in style.
Basically, we channel abundance. We spend the day in merriment and giving gifts and eating and drinking. We laugh and have fun and feel great. We are surrounded by abundance – the flow of it. G-d and His abundant mercy in the story of Mordechai and Esther, the food and wine we share with friends, the gift baskets we go around town delivering with our costumes on and with a smile, the charity we give.
Giving, taking, enjoying, being surrounded by good friends and love. That is how we celebrate the holiest day of the year. Not fasting. Not wearing slippers. Not staying in synagogue praying all day. LIVING. Enjoying. Seeing the holiness and happiness in the acts of eating, drinking, sharing good times with friends. Raising every-day actions into a level of holiness – that is Happiness. That is holiness.
And I do believe, even though Adar is coming to a close this week with the New Moon, that this is a lesson to take with us throughout all the months of the year. The fact that it coincides with Spring each year I am sure is no coincidence. This is the time of new beginnings. This is the time of year to see all the amazingness in all the abundance in the day-to-day that surrounds us. The fresh grass, the budding trees, the new flowers and the perfume they add to the fresh Spring air.
Bring amazingness into the everyday. Make magic in your life. Embrace your part in the ebb and flow of life. Miracles are all around. Bringing the amazing - seeing the miracles – that is what raises the level of the world to holy. Do your part to bring in the amazing. Start by being happy. Or start by being you and wind up at happy. Either way, they go hand in hand. Being your true self, bringing your part of amazingness into the world, that is your happy place.
Let’s all work from this happy place. Let’s greet Passover from this happy place.
Below is a link to an e-guide I published last week to help spread the calm and happiness this pre-Pesach season. Read it, share it, and add your comments to help make this an easy, flowing time of abundance and happiness for all of us.
With love, serenity, and a wish for you to see the amazing and bring it into your life,
I LOVE Purim - we all get dressed up as a theme. This year, the Smurfs :). Our table was decorated all in turquoise, and our gift baskets were filled with blue and white items, including Smurf-berry muffins!
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