This year I didn’t dress up as anything. But thought about it… a lot. So… I hope that counts . How fun is it to put on a costume and in a moment turn into something else/ someone else. As I see it- the something else we choose to turn into entails qualities that we wish we had. A strong super-hero: quality of strength and control I may want to have more of in my life. A famous football/basketball player: perhaps a quality of achievement, a quality of being really good at something and acquiring worldwide recognition. A ballerina: gentleness and grace, a clown: perhaps humor and laughter, a sense of lightness, and so on. I think you get the idea.
Purim ‘allows’ us. Or perhaps even encourages us to try out different ways of being, trying out different qualities that intuitively we yearn to have. I believe that this ‘trying out’ of different qualities is important to our development as human beings.
Now let’s take this to relationships. As I see it, when we meet someone, we are drawn to certain qualities that we see in them: inner strength, outer strength, beauty, good heart, gracefulness, strong will, humor, confidence, and so on. We are drawn on the physical level and are often attracted to this person (at least in most cases in the modern world that is based on romantic love).
So- nature made sure we will hook up with that person. How wonderful, now we have these qualities really close to us. Amazing!
As time passes, in a long-term relationship, we can start to notice that our superhero doesn’t really have it all under control and that the gracefulness I married- isn’t that graceful now. “What if all they did was wear masks…and …. I fell into that…” might be a common thought (in other wording, of course). But I say, what if we are trying on different masks all the time. Not only during Purim. What if that’s ok. And wonderful that we can try on so many ways of being!
To not leave you hanging on the relationship part- often- people can at some point start being resentful of this because they thought something else about their partner. But hey- in terms of development- it’s not supposed to stay that way- in which each partner holds onto a certain role rigidly. We are meant to learn from each other so that both of us will be strong, graceful, good-hearted and so on.
So, with the Purim atmosphere in the air- I wish you to try on and enjoy the different masks you want to try on. Dare to try out those that you are less comfortable with. Gently. And most importantly- enjoy!
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Feel free to message me regarding couples therapy, or regarding the online course for women that will be starting after Pesach- In which you will learn the psychology of love and relationships.
Author of ‘Your Happily Ever Love List’