Translation by Yehoshua Siskin
What can we take with us from Purim? Menachem Brod suggests the following:
“When we see someone dressed up on Purim as a frightening animal or a clown, we would never think about getting angry, being afraid, or taking that person seriously. After all, it’s just a costume. But in life we also frequently meet people in costume. This one is dressed up as arrogant, that one as vulgar, still another one as apathetic and distant – but what we see is not a true reflection of who these people are, it’s just a costume.
Sometimes our children dress up in a similar fashion and exhibit negative behaviors. In all these cases, we need to look deeper into what’s inside – their purity and goodness – and to reinforce it. We can even gently help them to remove the inauthentic costumes that they sometimes wear. The Jews in the Megillah dressed up as completely assimilated into the culture of ancient Persia. Only because of Haman’s decree to exterminate them were they reminded of who they were as their true identity was suddenly revealed.
We ourselves also wear costumes sometimes and need to look upon each other with love and understanding, knowing that whatever objectionable behavior we may see is not a reflection of the person inside. This awareness we need to take with us from Purim going forward and keep fresh in our minds throughout the year.”