~ What is What is Purim? ~
Purim means “lots” referring to the lottery that Haman used to choose the date for the massacre
of the Jews. Purim is celebrated on the fourteenth day of Adar. The fourteenth was chosen because it is the day
that the Jews battled for their lives and won. The fifteenth is celebrated as Purim also because the book of Esther
says that in Shushan (a walled city), deliverance from the scheduled massacre was not completed until the next day.
So the fifteenth is referred to as Shushan Purim. It is customary to read the book of Esther on Purim. While reading
it is tradition to boo, hiss, stamp feet and rattle grogers (noise makers) whenever Haman’s name is mentioned for
the purpose of “blotting out the name of Haman”. It is customary to have a party during Purim. It is tradition
to dress up and to “eat, drink and be merry”. Gifts are often given during Purim to friends, family and charity.
Hamentaschen is a triangular fruit-filled cookie that is common to make for Purim as well. Hamentaschen is pronounce
like “Ha-men-tah-sh-en” and literally means “Haman’s pocket” and is meant to represent
Haman’s three cornered hat.