Purim and Yom Kippur


In the World to Come, says the Zohar, the Jewish people will only celebrate two holidays–Purim and Yom Kippur. In fact the Zohar, refers to Yom Kippur as Yom Ki-Purim; literally, “a day like Purim,” even though you might not think the days have much in common.

The two days seem to be exact opposites. One is a day of levity and partying, and the other is a day of solemnity and fasting. On the day before Yom Kippur, it’s considered a mitzvah to feast like a king–while the day before Purim is the Fast of Esther, commemorating the Queen’s fast before beseeching her husband to save the Jewish people. Purim is one of the newest Jewish festivals, and Yom Kippur, outlined in the Torah, is one of the oldest.

So what does the Zohar think these holidays have in common? Though the two holidays provide radically different ways to get closer to God, the desired effect–the ideal itself of getting closer–is the same.

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