This is a simple and a bit naive question. I understand that a miracle everywhere is a super natural force unexplainable by current state of science.

The Purim story looks all natural, nothing truly extraordinary.

I heard some refer to it as "hidden miracles", but I find it difficult to grasp, aren't those hidden miracles called "the nature"?

So what miracle(s) do we mean saying Nes Purim and Al Hanissim?

  • why not the the confluence of events which allowed Esther to be in the right place, at the right time and be listened to, and the parallel events which led (independently) to Haman's downfall? – rosends Mar 24 at 12:28
  • Isn’t the very definition of nature “hidden miracles”? To paraphrase the Michtav MeEliyahu, there’s no inherent difference between nature and miracles; both are Hashem’s direct involvement with the world. The only difference is that nature is miracles we’ve gotten used to. – DonielF Mar 24 at 14:38
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    @DonielF So imagine we had בכל דור ודור קמים עלינו לכלותנו - every year. But Purim does not happen every year, it didn't happen with the destruction of the Temple. Is the lottery a miracle or statistics? What in Purim defies the laws of the Creation? – Al Berko Mar 24 at 19:19
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    @AlBerko I think the whole point is that nothing about Purim defies the laws of Creation, except our survival. If we had multiple Purim’s, it would just be redundant; one is enough to get the message across. – DonielF Mar 24 at 19:21
  • @AlBerko Miracles are natural events exaggerated to fit the occurrence in question. – Turk Hill Aug 21 at 23:30

If illogical behavior can count as a miracle, the fact that Achashverosh made ground for building the Second Temple might count as such.

If we also assume that the building requires appointing a king and exterminating Amalek (see my question "do-the-3-mitzvos-of-entering-israel-apply-to-the-second-temple"), we could notice that Achashverosh inadvertently:

  1. Raised the power of Mordechai (to a sort-of-king) and

  2. Ruled to hang Haman and his followers and fight other Amalekites (sort-of-Mechiat Amolek)

and thus fulfilling the prerequisites for the Temple. As the interpreters picture him as initially hating the idea of letting the Jews build the Temple he unknowingly allowed it.

While the Megillah only says he finally taxed all the countries, it is probably after he realized his fault.

  • If a miracle, as you say, defies the laws of creation, then it is a breach to natural law and can never be true. Marcels, are simply natural events exaggerated to fit the occasion. For example, Ralbag interprets that the sun did not really stand still. If it did, everything would die. Instead, he thinks the miracle was that Joshua beat his enemies very quickly. This was the miracle. Another example can be the parting of the Sea of Reeds. It wasn't an extraordinary event, rather it took place (naturally) when the Jews were trapped between the Sea and the Egyptian army. That was the miracle. – Turk Hill Aug 21 at 23:34

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