scroll in her home for thirty years.
When Beth finished telling her story, I sat in silence. Her words echoed in my heart and touched a place deep in my soul. I felt that some undeniable fate had brought us together and that the scroll must breathe new life. I told Beth that she had found her buyer. I made a date that Friday, for her to bring the scroll
to my home.
As I delicately slid the worn and aged parchment from its container, I could not contain my joy. Fully opened, it expanded almost eight feet. It was luminous and breathtaking in its simplicity. As my fingers traced over the Hebrew forms, a million thoughts raced through my mind. Whose hands painstakingly inscribed this? How many times had it been read? What devoted souls had passed it down from hand-to-hand and heart-to-heart only to find its way to the Holocaust? What was in the mind of the one who buried it, facing his own extermination? How was it unearthed?
How did Rabbi Scheiber acquire it?
As I held the sacred treasure, I realized that I would never know the answers. Only one thing was certain…. it survived!
Later that month, I had an expert who specializes in illuminated manuscripts confirm the scroll’s Ashkenazi roots and early nineteenth century origins. For weeks, I could not get the scroll out of my mind. I thought about how it traveled fromHungary, through the Holocaust, to theHamptons. I couldn’t help but believe that the precise timing of the scroll and its survival must be meant for a greater purpose. It had been buried too long and perhaps had a message for our modern world. I knew that it was a gift that belonged to many. I was only a link in the
chain of its unfinished story…
Over the past months, as I watch the world news and witness the mounting pressure onIsrael, I can’t fathom nuclear threats fromIran, or being surrounded on every side by adversaries. Nor can I ignore the fact that the Book of Esther takes place inPersia, in the fourth century BC, which is now modern dayIran. If synchronicity and faith take precedent, then the timing of the scroll’s appearance and the powerful narrative of Purim it contains is remarkable. It holds the survival and spiritual legacy of the Jewish people, against all odds.
This spiritual story is not only timeless, it may also help us navigate and survive in our world today, which is in great upheaval. It makes an unchallengeable case for faith and a commitment to higher truths, which are rarely supported in our modern world. It demonstrates that one pure heart, combined with courage and an unwavering faith, can change destiny. It is a true testament to the power of every human being to create significant, positive changes in our world and not become a victim. It carries a message of the noblest survival, the resurrection of the
King Solomon wisely said, “To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven.” This is a season of unprecedented challenges and a time for visionary ideas. Families, children and communities worldwide are broken, with no easy answers in site. The stakes are high, and yet the hand of God is higher. We need to heal what is within our reach and nurture all things pure, innocent and good. Compassion, forgiveness, gratitude, and prayer make a difference. What we do to our land, water, precious minerals, and how we treat the earth matters.
Hope, faith and love are eternal. Things eternal will always survive.
On my morning walk, along one of theHamptons’ pristine beaches, I meander along the shore and try to capture the immense beauty. The cool rush of a wave breaks across my feet and awakens me. I feel such deep gratitude to our ancestors that have walked before us and for the gifts of freedom we enjoy. A striking noise in the distance catches my ear as I turn and see an American flag whipping perilously against its flagpole. It fiercely struggles against the prevailing wind. On the horizon, the sky darkens with an impending storm. Our hearts should not fail. The human spirit’s greatest ally and protector stands as the motto of our country, a beacon of truth in our courtrooms, and is written on the face of every dollar bill,