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Chanukah We are all Menorahs Rabbinic Ruminations by Rabbi Josh L obel Chanukah, our ?Festival of L ights,? is one of our most treasured and celebrated holidays. We spin the dreidel, eat our fill of latkes and sufganiyot, and, of course, give each other presents. But the highlight of our Chanukah celebration is the lighting of the menorah. We recall the victory of the Maccabees who fought to keep their heritage and traditions alive. We also remember the miracle of the oil, which was only supposed to last one night, but instead lasted eight. Each night we add a candle, watching as the flickering flames spread their light in our homes and in our hearts. I n the Jewish tradition, light is one of our most important symbols. T he very beginning of our Torah tells the story of the creation of the world which commences with the Eternal?s command, ?L et there be light.? L ight to dispel the darkness of the chaos, the void. L ight to illuminate the universe. Only when God fills the world with light can the rest of creation come into existence. Much in the same way, we, the Jewish people, are commanded to be a ?light to the nations,? meaning, through our loving, compassionate, just, and charitable actions, we are to serve as a shining example to the world. I t is our responsibility to cut through the darkness of hate and oppression, of bigotry and intolerance, of greed and arrogance. We are meant to fill the world with light, creating a world overflowing with goodness, holiness, and peace. Simply put, we are commanded to be the living embodiment of a menorah. T his year, may our celebration of Chanukah remind us of our responsibility to be a menorah, to bring light to dark places. L et?s ensure that our own unique light shines through, warming and illuminating our world. Chag Sameach!

Profile for Chai at Beth El

Chai from Beth El - December 2017  

Chai from Beth El - December 2017