This year, instead of the Ariel Avrech Memorial Lecture, my wife Karen and I dedicated a new Torah in our son’s blessed memory.
The ceremony took place last week. The video should be up here at Seraphic Secret in a few weeks.
Families on Hanukkah gather together and celebrate around dreidels, chocolate coins, and presents. Yet the holiday’s most profound meaning is in its core symbol and ritual: the lighting of the menorah. Rabbi Meir Soloveichik takes us through Hanukkah’s two pivotal historical stages, the age of the Temple and the age of Diaspora, teaching us about the triumph of monotheism and Judaism, and the lessons Hanukkah’s miracles hold for anyone who cares about Jewish survival.
Today is the first day of Chanukah.
And here is a timeless message from Simon the Maccabee:
“We have not taken a foreign land, nor did we take the property of others — for this is the inheritance of our fathers, which was for some time unjustly possessed by our enemies. But we, having the opportunity, returned to us the inheritance of our fathers.”
— First Book of the Maccabees, 15:33-34.
“לא ארץ נוכריה לקחנו ולא ברכוש זרים משלנו, כי אם נחלת אבותינו, אשר בידי אויבינו בעת מן העיתים בלא משפט נכבשה. ואנחנו כאשר הייתה לנו עת, הושיבונו נחלת אבותינו” (ספר מקבים א, טו’ לג-לד) [Read more…] about Chanukah 2018: Same Enemies, Same Conflicts