Esther on an Allegorical Level

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On Purim we read the Book of Esther, which tells the story of the Purim miracle. The Persian king Achashverosh conspires with his Amalekite viceroy Haman to eradicate the entire Jewish nation, but God refused to allow their plans to unfold. Queen Esther, together with her relative Mordechai, spearhead the effort to turn the plan on it’s head: Instead of Haman killing Mordechai and the Jews; the Jews were given free rein to destroy their enemies. Every year we commemorate this miracle on the holiday of Purim. But the story goes deeper. Every part of Torah can be understood on multiple dimensions. The Gaon of Vilna wrote a masterful commentary explaining the Book on an allegorical level, in which the characters and the storylines symbolize the various conflicts of our lives. What emerges is a stunning portrayal of central components of Jewish philosophy that also contains very incisive lessons for Purim itself.

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