Esther and Mordechai instituted mishlo’ach manos as part of the Purim festivities. What has this got to do with Purim? Purim is about recognising HaShem’s Hand in events - that He is behind everything that happens. Where does sending food to one’s mate come into this? We can answer via a note that was hung on the door to the Beis HaMedrash in Kelm during the month of

Ellul each year. The note reminded everyone to be extra careful to create unity and foster good relations with others during the month leading up to Rosh HaShanah. What does this have to do with Rosh HaShanah? For on Rosh HaShanah we coronate HaShem as King, and in order to do that, there needs to be unity amongst His subjects - as the pasuk says ‘and there was in Yeshurun a king, when the people gathered together’ (explained to mean ‘when is there a king? When the people unite).

The same can be said of Purim. Yes, Purim is all about recognising HaShem’s Hand in our lives. But we want everyone to recognise this together - after all, the miracle took place to the people as a whole - and so we send food to each other to foster the unity that facilitates this communal recognition.

 

 

 

 

 

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