Dealing With the Hard Stuff

For many years, I had difficulty listening to the Megillah reading on Purim. I found the story morally repugnant. Vashti’s banishment for refusing to display herself before a group of drunken revelers seemed to me an example of male chauvinism it was impossible to slide over. And I experienced chapter nine, in which the Jews slay their enemies, as dreadful and bloodthirsty.