chanukah

Eight Days – Eight Thoughts

The festival of Chanukah is a time not only of joy and celebration, but of quiet reflection and introspection. Our Sages teach us (see the commentaries on Mishlei 6:23) that the lights that we kindle reflect the inner light of Torah that burns bright in our national memories as well as in our individual homes. …

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Eight Days – Eight Thoughts: Day Eight

Chanukah Rabbi Brander

The Flame and the Light Rabbi Dr. Kenneth Brander Beit Shammai and Beit Hillel offer differing views on the kindling of the Chanukah lights. Beit Shammai’s reason for requiring a continual decrease from eight (Chanukah) lights to one is so that the various kindlings correspond to the bull (sacrifices) of the Sukkot festival, and Beit …

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Eight Days – Eight Thoughts: Day Seven

Chanukah Bili Rabenstein

A Light that Gradually Diminishes; a Light that Gradually Intensifies Rabbanit Bili Rabenstein The Sages taught in a beraita: The basic mitzvah of Chanukah is to have a light kindled each day by a person, the head of the household, for himself and his household. And the mehadrin, i.e., those who are meticulous in the …

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Eight Days – Eight Thoughts: Day Six

Chanukah Atirat Grunevich

“If it was Extinguished, One is Not Bound to Relight it” Atirat Granevich The flickering lights in the Chanukiyah are truly heart-warming. These candles, melting away under the flames, draw our gazes and publicize the wondrous miracles that Hashem performed for us in those days. With this in mind, the halakha exempting us from relighting …

Read moreEight Days – Eight Thoughts: Day Six

Eight Days – Eight Thoughts: Day Five

Chanukah Yehoshua Grunstein

Chanukah: For All and For Us Rabbi Yehoshua Grunstein The private and public symbiosis of the Chanukah candles is vital in halakha: why are they lit in the home, but facing the outside? Both the Talmud and Rambam’s code illustrate to us the story that lead up to the catalyst of this mitzvah; the lightning …

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Eight Days – Eight Thoughts: Day Four

Chanukah Pnina Omer

The Women of Chanukah Pnina Omer Lighting Chanukah candles is an obligation as well as a privilege for women. This is clearly illustrated and accepted within Jewish law “… for they, too, were present at that miracle”, according to the Shulchan Aruch (Code of Jewish Law). This precept also appears in the Gemarah (Talmud), but …

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Eight Days – Eight Thoughts: Day Three

chanukah Rabbi Kanterovich

The Precedent for the Final Redemption Rabbi Chaim Kanterovitz In his assessment of the causes, and aftermath of the historical events that led to the establishment of the festival of Chanukah, Rambam (Maimonides 12th century Spain) writes towards the end of the first law: “…וגברו בני חשמונאי הכוהנים הגדולים והרגום והושיעו ישראל מידם והעמידו מלך …

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Eight Days – Eight Thoughts: Day Two

Chanukah Sally

The Message in the Candles Rabbanit Sally Mayer The festival of Chanukah commemorates an incredible miracle. When the Beit Hamikdash was rededicated by the Hasmoneans after their military victory, a small flask of oil sufficient enough to light the menorah for one night, lasted eight. However, there have been other miracles which seem far greater …

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Eight Days – Eight Thoughts: Day One

Chanukah Rabbi Riskin

The Miracle of Lights or of Victory? Rabbi Dr. Shlomo Riskin The festival of Chanukah celebrates the victory of a small band of Hasmonean believers in God. We also celebrate the triumph of Jewish traditions over the massive forces of the Hellinistic ruling class of Judea together with the military might of Greek-Syria, whose misguided …

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The President of Ecuador Lights Chanukah Candles

Nir Koren and President of Ecuador

The President of Ecuador Lights Chanukah Candles At an interfaith confab hosted by the president of Ecuador, the president lit Chanukah candles. Local Jewish community rabbi: “We are fulfilling an immense calling here” December 10, 2018 | Translated from Arutz 7 The climax of an interfaith confab hosted by Lenín Moreno, the president of Ecuador, was …

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A Thousand Words – December 10, 2018

Rav Boaz Pash Lights Chanukah Candles in Warsaw

Rabbi Boaz Pash, Rosh Kollel Torat Yosef and head of the OTS Amiel BaKehila delegation to Poland lights Chanukah candles in Warsaw, accompanied by musician and delegation member Reuven Bransburg, OTS is bringing light and hope to the very same place where they wanted to exterminate our people.  Am Yisrael Chai! View previous Photo of …

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A Thousand Words – December 3, 2018

collage from Chanukah 2018

Thousands of Israelis across the country are being brought together this Chanukah (and all year round!) through innovative, appealing initiatives run by the Yachad Jewish Identity program’s Jewish Cultural Facilitators all over the country, from the northern border with Lebanon all the way down to Eilat. Each person comes with their own light and quickly discovers …

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