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HAG PURIM, HAG PURIM

  These are words of one of the Purim songs. They mean holiday Purim, holiday Purim in English This holiday as all the others has a long history but Purim is very special. Purim is a carnival when everybody wears costumes of the characters that determined the destiny of Jewish people 2500 years ago. The integral part of the holiday is abundant meals with a lot of wine. Purim is celebrated every year for 2 days 14 and 15 of Adar, this year - 9 and 10 March.

  The name of the holiday came from the word "pur"; "pur" means, "lot".

  Once Aman (grandee at court of King Akhasheverosh) wanted to annihilate all Jews of Persia. But his plans were not carried out! Aman threw lots and on 14 and 15 Adar all jews should have been destroyed. But Ester the King's wife and her brother Mordekhay stopped the evildoer just in time.
This holiday everybody should keep 4 commandments:

1. To read the roll "Megelat Ester". And all men, women and children have to listen to it.
2. To give presents to each other (two kinds of food)
3. To help needy people. Everybody has to help at least to needy Jews. The minimum sum of money in our country is 3 tenge.
4. Holiday meals. A lot of food and alcoholic beverages. There is a proverb saying: " Everybody must be drunk so nobody could distinguish Aman from Mordekhay".

  Purim was celebrated in Almaty. There was a big show in Almaty Big Circus on 9 of March 2001; many circus performers participated in it.

  There was Yeshaya Cohen the main rabbi of Kazakhstan. He was wearing costume of Akhashaverosh and read the Ester roll. All visitors got small packets to present them to each other, carnival rattles and a coin to keep the third commandment.

  Klezmer Orchestra played before the show started and the show finished in the park near the Circus with refreshments, "Aman's ears" (tree-cornered rolls with poppy seeds), dances and traditional purimshpil (Purim sketch) resented by Youth Club.

Mikhael Kulikov

Rabbi Yeshaya Cohen is reading the Ester Roll
Rabbi Yeshaya Cohen is reading the Ester Roll
  Little Tsarina Ester
Little Tsarina Ester
  Merry carnival
Merry carnival
  Purim personages on a scene
Purim personages on a scene
Klezmer Orchestra is playing
Klezmer Orchestra is playing
Children of the Community
Children of the Community
Traditional rattles
Traditional rattles
Photo by Vladimir Semchuk
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