GLADDNESS, JOY, AND HAPPINESS

Esther 
(8:16) relates, "The Jews had light and Simchah and Sason." The English 
translation of Simchah is "gladness" and the translation of Sason is "joy." I 
am not aware of an essential difference between these two words in English; it 
seems to be merely a way of saying the same thing with different words.
However, the Vilna Ga'on in his commentary to Esther writes that in Lashon 
ha'Kodesh there is a significant difference between the two words. "Simchah" 
refers to the feeling that one has when he is on the way to find what he 
desires. "Sason" is the feeling that comes afterwards; it is the happiness that 
one experiences in his heart when he has already achieved that which he sought.
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