5781 פורים משולש

First

In Megilah Esther, the Pasuk says קימו וקבלו היהודים עליהם ועל זרעם ועל כל הנלוים עליהם (ט,כז). The Gra says on the words ועל זרעם that it’s referring to קטנים, that the Jews were מקבל on themselves and their children. But קטנים are פטור from all Mitzvos so how were they מקבל for their children. It would seem that this Mitzvah, קריאת מגילה, is an exception to the rule and the Mitzvah of Megilah was taken upon the קטנים as well.

The Mishnah in Megilah 19b has a Machlokes about a קטן. The Tana Kama says that a קטן cannot be מוציא a גדול and Reb Yehuda says a קטן can be מוציא a גדול. Tosfos discusses what קטן the Mishnah is talking about. If it’s a קטן שלא הגיע לחינוך, then how could Reb Yehuda say he can be מוציא a גדול because if he himself is not obligated, then he can’t be מוציא others. And if its קטן who is הגיע לחינוך, then why does the Tana Kama say he can’t be מוציא a גדול if the entire חיוב of מגילה is only מדרבנן. So Tosfos answers that really the Mishnah is dealing with a קטן שהגיע לחינוך and Reb Yehuda holds that תרי דרבנן could be מוציא חד דרבנן that even though the חיוב of the קטן is weaker, but since there are two, one being חינוך and one being קריאת מגילה, therefore he can be מוציא the גדול who has one חיוב דרבנן. According to this, it could be the Gaon was going like Reb Yehuda that a קטן could be מוציא a גדול because the קטן is actually מחוייב in מקרא מגילה and not because of חינוך.

However, this is difficult to say because the Gaon doesn’t seem to be getting involved in a Machlokes, but rather he is explaining according to everyone.

Tosfos in Megilah 4a says in the name of the בה"ג that נשים are מחוייב in Megilah but only in שמיעה and not קריאה and therefore can’t be מוציא men who have a חיוב קריאה. When Tosfos in Arachin 3a quotes this בה"ג, he says נשים וקטנים. So the בה"ג is saying that קטנים are only מחוייב in שמיעה but not קריאה and it’s based on the fact that both of their חיובים Are because אף הן היו באותו הנס. But it’s clear that the בה"ג is not discussing the חיוב חינוך because חינוך is to be מחנך the קטן to do the Mitzvah that the גדול is obligated to do. Therefore he is saying that קטנים have an independent חיוב just like women do of שמיעת המגילה.

Perhaps this could be the explanation for the Gaon. When the Gaon says that קטנים are מחוייב in מגילה, he could be referring to this independent obligation of שמיעת המגילה. This can be according to both Tanaim mentioned above in the Mishnah in Megilah 19b because their Machlokes regarding whether or not the קטן can be מוציא the גדול was within the חיוב קריאה which could be only with his obligation of חינוך because that חיוב has a חיוב קריאה. For that there is a Machlokes about תרי דרבנן being מוציא a חד דרבנן. However, this independent חיוב mentioned in which קטנים are like נשים only carries a חיוב שמיעה in which case he for sure wouldn’t be able to be מוציא a גדול who has a חיוב קריאה. So Tosfos, explaining the Machlokes Tanaim, was only discussing the obligation of a קטן in קריאת המגילה which came from Chinuch, but not his own independent חיוב because his own independent חיוב is only חיוב שמיעה and just like women can’t be מוציא men because they only have a חיוב שמיעה, the same would be by קטנים.

It comes out that a קטן is מחוייב in Megilah more than other Mitzvos because by other Mitzvos, he is obligated because of Chinuch whereas by Megilah, he is actually obligated because of אף הן היו באותו הנס. According to this, we could understand מיחייב איניש לבסומי בפוריא עד דלא ידע בין ארור המן לברוך מרדכי because every adult also has within themselves the immature child. The פרסומי ניסא of Purim has to be not only grasped by the mature adult but also by the immature child. Within every גדול is the טף level and on Purim it shouldn’t only be understood as ידע which is the adult level but it should also be לא ידע which is the level of the minor that is incorporated in every גדול.

Second

In the end of the Megilah, the Pasuk says קימו וקבלו היהודים עליהם ועל זרעם ועל כל הנלוים עליהם ולא יעבור להיות עשים את שני הימים האלה ככתבם וכזמנם בכל שנה ושנה. The Gemara in Megilah learns from the words לא יעבור that the latest day one can read the Megilah is on the 15th but not later. That is the reason this year on a Purim Meshulash, the Megilah was read on Friday, the 14th.

The next Pasuk says והימים האלה נזכרים ונעשים בכל דור ודור משפחה ומשפחה מדינה ומדינה ועיר ועיר וימי הפורים האלה לא יעברו מתוך היהודים וזכרם לא יסוף מזרעם. On the words לא יעברו, Chazal say that לעתיד לבא all the Yomim Tovim will no longer exist except for Purim, as the Pasuk says לא יעברו.

From the first ולא יעבור we learn that the Megilah cannot be read past the 15th of Adar and the קבלה was they wouldn’t celebrate Purim past the 15th. The next Pasuk that begins והימים האלה seems to be saying and so it will be-ולא יעברו that this commitment they took upon themselves will actually materialize. Seemingly, the connection between these Psukim is the first Pasuk is about the commitment they took upon themselves and the following Pasuk-ולא יעברו is stating how it will actually materialize; this commitment of not celebrating Purim past the 15th and not that Purim will never cease to exist. But on these words לא יעברו in the second Pasuk, Chazal say that לעתיד לבא all the Yomim Tovim will no longer exist except for Purim, which seems to be separating these two Psukim. How could this be understood?

It is interesting that which the Gemara says the כפרים are מקדים ליום הכניסה because they can’t do it on their own as opposed to being pushed off until after Purim, until ט"ז. The Gemara says the reason is because ולא יעבור and therefore it’s because of this ולא יעבור that instead of reading the Megilah after the בני הכרכים, the בני הכפרים read it before. It’s interesting that the simple Jew is the one who ushers in Purim before the עשרה בטלנים-the תלמידי חכמים who define an עיר. Instead of them following the עיירות גדולות, they actually take in the Purim earlier.

This could be understood that the inyan of Purim is the Mesiras Nefesh the Jews had for Yiddishkeit at that time, not giving up one’s identity even in a situation where one’s life is being threatened. The Chassid Yaavetz in his Sefer Ohr HaChaim says about the Spanish Inquisition that it was the simple Jewish women who were ready to give up their lives rather than convert to Christianity as opposed to Jewish men who were much more learned. When it comes to Mesiras Nefesh, sometimes it’s the simple Jew who comes before the Talmid Chacham. It’s in the context of not giving up one’s identity even in a situation where one’s life is being threatened that sometimes the simpletons can come before the Talmidei Chachamim. Therefore, from the Pasuk ולא יעבור that teaches us not to read the Megilah after the 15th is where we learn that the כפרים are מקדים ליום הכניסה and are not מאחרים to after when the עיירות גדולות read the Megilah. The reason being because Purim is a celebration of simplicity in Emunah and therefore the בני הכפרים come before. This is connection to the next Pasuk of לא יעברו that Purim will never cease to exist because when something is attached to a deep understanding, sometimes a person has it and sometimes a person doesn’t have it. But when something is based on אמונה פשוטה, then it doesn’t depend on one’s level of understanding.

Third

This week’s Parsha, Parshas Tetzaveh, is connected to Purim in the following way. In describing the מעיל, the Psukim say the following:

ועשית על שוליו רמני תכלת וארגמן ותולעת שני על שוליו סביב ופעמני זהב בתוכם סביב, פעמן זהב ורמון פעמן זהב ורמון על שולי המעיל סביב , והיה על אהרן לשרת ונשמע קולו בבאו אל הקדש לפני ה' ובצאתו ולא ימות (כח, לג-לה)

On the bottom of the מעיל were bells that made noise when the Kohen Gadol would walk around. The Pasuk says the function of these bells was for the Kohen Gadol to be heard when entering- ונשמע קולו בבאו אל הקדש לפני ה'. Regarding these פעמונים, the Ramban writes the following:

ומה שאמר למעלה ונשמע קולו בבואו אל הקדש ולא ימות, הוא על דעתי ביאור למצות הפעמונים, כי מפני שאין בהם צורך בלבישה, ואין דרך הנכבדים לעשות להם כן, לכך אמר כי צוה בהם בעבור שישמע קולו בקדש, ויכנס לפני אדוניו כאלו ברשות, כי הבא בהיכל מלך פתאום חייב מיתה בטכסיסי המלכות, כענין אחשורוש. The Ramban writes the ringing of the bells served as if knocking on the door before entering, כאלו ברשות because for someone to come in to the inner chambers of the king without permission is punishable by death like is seen by Achashverosh.

Chazal say that whenever the Pasuk refers to Achashverosh as just המלך, it is really referring to the מלכו של עולם. By Achashverosh, no one was allowed to enter his inner chambers without being invited and to go uninvited without permission was punishable by death. However, the one time a person could enter without invitation/permission was if the king granted permission with the extension of his scepter as the Pasuk says ויושט המלך לאסתר את שרביט הזהב אשר בידו. Similarly, there is one time a year that the Kohen Gadol was allowed to enter without “knocking”, meaning without the פעמונים, and that was on Yom Kippur when he would go into the קודש הקדשים without the מעיל.

Chazal say that יום הכיפורים is כ-פורים. On Yom Kippur, the Kohen Gadol was allowed to enter into the לפני ולפנים without knocking, but nevertheless a שתויי יין was still אסור. However on Purim, we are able to enter the לפני ולפנים as a שתויי יין.

Fourth

On Purim the Minhag is to wear a mask, to cover our identity. Chazal sayכשם שאין פרצופיהם שווים, כך אין דעותיהם שוות. The fact that every human being looks differentl reflects on the fact that there is not one mind similar to another אין דעותיהם שוות. It’s sometimes difficult for people to get along because אין דעותיהם שוות. However, on Purim when we wear a mask and cover our faces, it’s no longer שאין פרצופיהם שווים because we all look the same and therefore it’s no longer אין דעותיהם שוות and we can unite. This is really the idea behind the Pasuk in the Megilah when Esther tells Mordechai לך כנוס את כל היהודים וכו'. It’s a message about unity.

Fifth

On the Pasuk in the Parshah mentioned above, it says ונשמע קולו בבאו אל הקדש. The Baal HaTurim (who needed to be known as the בעל הטורים, even though a person usually doesn’t usually need to be referenced by something he wrote, but in this case nobody would take it seriously if it wasn’t writer by the Tur) writes the following:

ונשמע. ג' במסורה. ונשמע קולו בבאו אל הקדש. כל אשר דבר ה' נעשה ונשמע (לעיל כד ז). ונשמע פתגם המלך (אסתר א כ). והיינו דאמרינן במגילה (ג ב) אמר רבה מקרא מגילה ותלמוד תורה מקרא מגילה עדיף. מקרא מגילה ועבודה מקרא מגילה עדיף. והיינו כל אשר דבר ה' נעשה ונשמע, דהיינו תלמוד תורה ועבודה דכתיב בה ונשמע קולו. ונשמע פתגם המלך והיינו קריאת מגילה וסמך ליה כי רבה היא (אסתר א כ), אלמא דעדיף טפי. וגם רבה קאמר לה.

5780

Haman thought that Adar was a month of bad luck for the Jews because of the death of Moshe and it was probably a painful and difficult day for the Jews being that they lost the greatest leader in history. But the Jews pulled it together and on that day they learned a very important lesson. They learned that as a people we must keep moving on and with the death comes a new beginning and opportunity. The death of Moshe was so important not only because of how essential of a leader he was but because the Jews response to his death showed us how we should react by every Jewish death.

The Gemara in Megilah 3a says that Haman didn’t know that he died and was born on the seventh of Adar. The Gemara is seemingly backwards as it should have said that Haman didn’t realize that he was born and died on the seventh, but instead it says that Haman didn’t know that he died and was born on that day. But it could be that Haman didn’t understand this idea that death is an opportunity to get to a place and level that wasn’t attainable during the life time of the individual. As the Gemara in Temurah 16b says the day Moshe died, 3,000 Halachos we forgotten and עתניאל בן קנז was mechadesh them through pilpul. This method would never have come to be if not for the death of Moshe. Therefore as painful as a Yahrzeit is in terms of the loss of the past, it also creates an opportunity for growth and in building a future.

This idea is also one of the messages of Purim and why we say עד דלא ידע בין ארור המן לברוך מרדכי because with all the events of Purim brought tremendous potential for growth so we are not even sure if it was a bad thing, everything that transpired, because of the growth that it brought.

In Taanis 29a, the Gemara says כשם שמשנכנס אב ממעטין בשמחה כך משנכנס אדר מרבין בשמחה. Regarding being ממעט בשמחה in Av, that is a Mishnah. But where did the Gemara see it to extend this to the month of Adar, and what is the connection-the כשם. But just like the month Av was a month of destruction, Adar is a time of rebuilding and from destruction comes rebirth. The same simcha we lose in Av can become a source of simcha because it enables growth that wasn’t possible when we were in the past. Just like we said earlier that Moshes passing created opportunity for pipul, so to the galus which came from the destruction of the Beis Hamikdash created a new opportunity for growth.

The Mechaber at the end of Hilchos Rosh Chodesh, סימן תכח, describes a סימן לקביעת המועדים through א"ת ב"ש. He writes that each day of Pesach corresponds to when a holiday during the year will fall out. For example, whatever the first day of Pesach is, Tisha Baav will be on that day of the week. It is understandable that all the holidays are נרמז in the holiday of Pesach as Pesach is in Nissan which is ראש חדשים. (Also as the Gemara says in Rosh Hashanah 4a that Pesach is the ראש לרגלים regarding the איסור of באל תאחר. In order to be עובר the איסור of באל תאחר it needs to be that three רגלים כסדרן pass starting with Pesach). But when it comes to the sixth day of Pesach, he writes that the sixth day of Pesach is the day of the week that the previous Purim was on. Why is it that the days of Pesach hint to all the holidays in the upcoming year but for Purim, it refers to the Purim from last year?

It must be that even though Nissan is technically the first month of the year, there is an element of Adar that makes it the beginning. Adar is at the end of the year, but the end is really the beginning (just like when a person hits rock bottom, he can only go up so it’s really the beginning for growth). Adar is אחרית כראשית because it is the month, with the holiday of Purim, which teaches us that an end can really be a new beginning. The end is already a beginning for the new beginning.

This message can be seen regarding Amalek. In Parshas Balak, the Pasuk says(כד,כ) ראשית גוים עמלק ואחריתו עדי אבד. Although Amalek flourishes in the beginning, but in the end, he withers. But the Jewish peoples greatness is that at the end, we don’t wither rather we renew ourselves and the end is really a new beginning.

The Chasam Sofer in Parshas B’haloscha says in the name of his Rebbe Reb Nosson Adler that the main growth of a Talmud only comes when his Rebbe passes away. As we see by Yisro that he says to Moshe לא אלך כי אם אל ארצי ואל מולדתי אלך(י,ל). Yisro was saying that if he stays by Moshe, then he won’t be a הולך and only once he is אל ארצי ואל מולדתי, away from Moshe, can he be הולך, because once he is away from his Rebbe, then he can shteig.

Rashi in Megilah on 4b says chapter 30 in Tehillim, מזמור שיר, is about Mordechai, Esther, and Haman. The end of the מזמור which says הפכת מספדי למחול לי is referring to Moshe’s death because although it was a tremendous מספד, it turned into a מחול because of all the potential future growth which was now possible as mentioned above. And this is the root of the miracle of Purim because that which Haman thought Adar was a bad month for the Jews because of Moshe’s death was really a good month because of the higher level of growth that were only able to be reached with his passing.

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