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Midah of the Month of March: Chesed/Kindness

03/01/2022 10:00:38 AM

Mar1

Tara Saltzman

In the month of Adar (this year right in the middle of March) we celebrate the primarily joyful holiday of Purim.  While retelling the Megillat Esther through irreverent merriment, it is also worth seriously highlighting how influential Haman’s hateful words were in mobilizing a community to seek the destruction of another and how very much this continues to happen every day.  

While Esther’s heroism makes for good storytelling and imagery, it should also move us to recognize the imperative to use our words for the kindness and compassion required to quell the cacophony of hateful speech seeding injustice, intolerance, hatred, abuse and cruelty.

Incendiary language (lies, slander and gossip) are as destructive as the wildfires we’ve recently experienced in Colorado.  Sudden and vicious in their power to devour.  The word “dibur”, shares a root with the same word  for devorim (Bees or Hornets) and devarim (word or speech).  Words are so powerful they can inspire, enlighten and create worlds (Genesis 1:3 God said “let there be light - and there was light”) or assault, tear asunder and destroy communities (Murder Hornet)
 
Practice:  

  • Make noise for social justice by speaking out for communities in need.  
  • Use rice and pasta boxes for Purim groggers, then donate them to a food bank after the celebration 
     
Thu, July 7 2022 8 Tammuz 5782