Chanuka Today

closeup photo of green leaves

Chanuka is a festivity that everybody likes. Also there are no restrictions about traveling, working or turning on lights. It’s only fun and party. But are we really celebrating Chanuka the way the Chachamim meant?

 Chanuka is the triumph of the light of Torah over the Chochma of the Greeks, that means that Torah is not only a subject taught in school, rather is the supreme knowledge of The Creator Himself! That’s why the way we were commanded to celebrate Chanuka is by lighting the Chanuka candles only. There’s no obligation of having a festive meal or anything else, just to light and see that light. We can’t even use it for illumination, only for the Mitzvah.

 I believe that this is a time to stop and analyze whose side we’re on: the Maccabees or the Greeks? A lot of people call themselves Maccabees, but they behave like Greeks. How can you have a Jewish sports competition called Maccabee Games? Those are the Greek games! (Not that it should not be permissible to have sports competition, but to name the contest after the Maccabees that fought against it, is like opening a non-kosher restaurant called “Kosher Corner”).

Therefore when we light the candles and we thank HaShem “Al ha nissim ve al ha purkan…” We have to thank Him for giving us the privilege of living with Torah and that His Torah is the light that illuminates our lives.

Shabat Shalom and Chanuka Sameach!!

Soly Firman

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