Thursday, February 21, 2013

3 Purim Pet Peeves

Purim is supposed to be a joyous holiday.  Define it. What's joy?

1- I've never been one to consider loosing control aka getting drunk or high to be enjoyable.  And when it comes to Purim drinking, the point of the drinking isn't to be oblivious to the fact that you're making a fool of yourself, embarrassing your loved ones or endangering yourself or others.

The Rebbetzin's Husband posted his annual post about Purim and drinking.  It combines halacha (Jewish Law) and common sense, a perfect recipe.
On Purim we celebrate the ultimate joy of a sudden national rescue, and our sages have taught that we should imbibe alcohol at the Purim Seudah as part of this celebration. Just as we abstain from various foods and from drink at certain times of the year to induce sadness, so we indulge in various foods and in drink at other times of the year, to induce joy. The gemara’s standard for imbibing is to drink until we cannot tell the difference between “Cursed is Haman” and “Blessed is Mordechai” (Megilah 7b).

Authorities differ on how much to drink, but the following is clear: An adult who is medically, psychologically and emotionally able to drink, and who has a designated driver, should drink some amount of alcohol - preferably enough that he will feel lightheaded (Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 695:2). One should enjoy his Purim meal relatively early in the afternoon, drink a little, and then sleep off the effects of the alcohol. (just an excerpt, read the entire article)

2- I also must say that I also don't enjoy watching other people drunkenly "celebrate."  That is not my idea of a good time.

3- I really can't follow the reading of the Megillat, Scroll of Ester when there is noise.  I don't know if it's my hearing or just an aspect of ADHD.  I get easily distracted.  And I'm upset by the fact that rabbis don't take that into account when they emphasize the importance of large public readings to "unify" the community.

There are lots of ways to celebrate Purim which are acceptable by Jewish Law and aren't in my list of Purim Peeves.


goyisherebbe said...

Purim is really very much about the difference between men and women. Men need this experience once in a while and it doesn't do anything much for women. Women have to be good sports within reason. Cook before, clean up after, have a bemused smile on your face during. Women have a low tolerance for alcohol and are likely to get sick from a little too much. Men need to drink large quantities, by and large, to get drunk. Public gatherings and for the benefit of men mostly. How about hearing the megillah at a reading for women?

Batya said...

Goyish, you may have it there. Purim is one of the proofs of the inherent and unchangeable differences between the sexes.
I'm finding it harder and harder to find a women's or home-reading here. No doubt they still exist, but as my friends and I are older, fewer miss the large readings.

goyisherebbe said...

Ask around next time. I am sure many women in their childbearing years are hearing the megilla at home. You can certainly join one of them. Maybe just ask whoever has just given birth.

Batya said...

goyish, I always ask on yishuv email. Many go to shuls' 2nd readings. We have a few. I went to two places twice, equalling our 4 readings. One a home reading and the other a special quiet minyan that did 3 restrained "haman-blockers"