Rejuvenation and Hanukah

Lone Maple TreeOn Hanukah we celebrate miracles.

After our holy Temple – the Beit Hamikdash – was ransacked by the Greeks, the Jews who recaptured it found a jug of pure oil to kindle the Menorah. It was supposed to last one day. It lasted miraculously 8 days – enough time to travel to get new oil.

The Beit Yosef – Rabbi Yosef Caro – Codifier of the Jewish Work of Law – the Shulchan Aruch poses a question:

  • If the Miracle of the lights of Hanukah was only seven days – because the first day it was natural for it to remain alight – why do we celebrate Hanukah 8 days?
  • The Beit Yosef provides 70 answers to the question.

    Some include –

    The first day we celebrate the miracle of the Jews victory over the Greek empire.
    The first day we celebrate the fact that we found a Jug of oil intact with the Cohen Gadol’s (Chief Cohen) seal.
    We celebrate that every day only one-eighth of the oil burned.
    We celebrate that every day the cups on the branches of the menorah refilled miraculously with oil.

    Another answer he gives is:

    The first day we celebrate nature. Nature itself is a miracle.


    Observing the physical world we observe many miracles daily – the miracle of a tree, the miracle of a baby, the miracle of life.

    Our problem is that we view the daily beauty of life as mundane or take it for granted. It is only nature.

    The Torah says all is a miracle.

    G-d recreates the world continuously.

    When viewed as such every creation is becomes special and every moment important.

    Every new moment is a new gift – a new miracle. A wonder to appreciate.

    Grabbing the moment and turning it into eternity through doing a kindness is the way to grab eternity.

    Learning Torah gives us the ability to encapsulate time and leave a legacy for the world.

    Every moment is special – using it for a Mitzvah – helps us renew life continuously.

    Just remember – life itself is a miracle.

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