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Lesson Transcript

Hello, and welcome to the Culture Class- Holidays in Israel Series at HebrewPod101.com. In this series, we’re exploring the traditions behind Israeli holidays and observances. I’m Eric, and you're listening to Season 1, Lesson 3 - Memorial Feast for the Triumph of Esther, or Purim.
There’s a holiday that Israeli children wait for every year. Well, the adults do too. That holiday is Purim, which celebrates how the Jews of the Kingdom of Persia were saved from wicked Haman’s plot. Purim, which lasts two days, begins on the 14th of Adar, according to the Hebrew calendar. In 2015, Purim was celebrated on March 4th, and in 2016, it will be celebrated on March 23rd.
Now, before we get into more detail, I've got a question for you-
On Purim a special pastry is eaten. What is it, and what part of the body is it associated with?
If you don't already know, keep listening! The answer will be revealed at the end of this lesson!
Purim is based on a story written in the Scroll of Esther or מגילת אסתר (megilat ester) in Hebrew. According to the story, Ahasueros, the king of Persia, banished his wife and chose Esther, the Jewess, to take her place. Haman, the highest ranking minister in the kingdom, planned to kill all of the Jews, but Esther discovered his plot, and thanks to her wisdom and sensitivity, she was able to thwart Haman’s plans. Since then, Jews have celebrated the victory over Haman, and have read the Scroll of Esther every year.
The most prominent custom, or מנהג (min’hag) in Hebrew, that is associated with Purim is wearing costumes or in Hebrew תחפושות (taħposot). Princesses, knights, witches, clowns, wizards, and superheroes can be seen everywhere. The costumes aren't worn only at night, but all throughout the holiday, including the day, at school, on the street, and at work. On Purim, you must be happy and celebrate, and you can find street parties and bright, colorful parades everywhere.
On Purim, it is customary for people to give each other tasty food packages. These are called משלוח מנות (mishloaħ manot). They are given to friends, colleagues at work, and sometimes even to strangers, so that we make each other happy. Another holiday custom is to give alms to the poor—the more, the merrier.
On Purim, people gather to read the Scroll of Esther together. During the reading, everyone has noisemakers, called רעשנים (ra’ashanim), and each time the name of the evil Haman is mentioned, people make as much noise as they can. The noise symbolizes the disdain for Haman.
Now it's time to answer our quiz question-
Which sweet food is eaten on Purim, and what body part is it associated with? On Purim, people eat a sweet, brittle cookie made of dough stuffed with poppy seeds or in Hebrew פרג (pereg), or sometimes, with chocolate or dates. It’s called אזני המן (oznei haman), meaning “Haman’s ears”, because its triangular shape looks like the ears of the evil Haman.
How was the lesson? Did you learn anything interesting? When did you last dress up as someone else?
Leave a comment letting us know at HebrewPod101.com, and we'll see you in the next lesson!

3 Comments

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😄 😞 😳 😁 😒 😎 😠 😆 😅 😜 😉 😭 😇 😴 😮 😈 ❤️️ 👍

HebrewPod101.com Verified
Monday at 06:30 PM
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When did you last dress up as someone else?

Hebrewpod101.com Verified
Wednesday at 09:08 AM
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Hi shelley goldenberg,


Thanks for commenting!


The correct translation in this case should be "התחפושת האהובה עליי היא להתלבש כמו אסתר המלכה"


Yours,

Roi

Team Hebrewpod101.com

shelley goldenberg
Sunday at 03:06 AM
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My favorite costume is dressing like queen Esther. התחפושת שלי האהוב אליי מתלבשת כמו אסתר המלכה