Photo Credit: Koren Publishers, OU Press

Title: Megillat Esther Mesorat HaRav: Commentary Based on the Teachings of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik
Publisher: Koren Publishers, OU Press



Theologian Arnold Wolf wrote some years ago that people will still be reading the works of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik in a thousand years. In the 25 years since The Rav’s death, the influence of Rabbi Soloveitchik has only grown and become more significant. And as the years pass, the demand for his teachings has increased and more of his teachings are coming to light.

Just in time for Purim, Megillat Esther Mesorat HaRav is a slim volume that contains the Rav’s commentary on Megillat Esther and ma’ariv for Purim. Editors Simon Posner, Eliyahu Krakowski and Moshe Genack have gathered many of the Rav’s previously published explanations in other works and collected them here in a single book.

In his introduction to Megillat Esther, the editors quote The Rav from Days of Deliverance: Essays on Purim and Hanukkah. The Rav astutely notes that the story of Esther tells us in the most lively, realistic fashion, with a tinge of refined yet biting sarcasm, about paradoxical, absurd events, which are both tragic and comical at the same time. This book is worth purchasing just for this full introduction alone.

Other interesting insights the book contains are the Rav’s insights into the nature of Amalek, the connection between Purim and Yom HaKipurim, and more.

The book closes with 16 reshimot (short notes) on various Talmudic topic related to Purim and Megillat Esther.

For those looking to enhance their understanding of the holiday of Purim and the megillah, Megillat Esther Mesorat HaRav is a most enriching read.

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