Menu



error This forum is not active, and new posts may not be made in it.
Promote
Geketa Holman

858
2080 Posts
2080
Invite Me as a Friend
Top 100 Poster
Person Of The Week
Hanukkah
12/8/2008 11:10:17 AM

This year we start our Hanukkah celebration on Kislev 25-Tevet 2

December 21 - 29, 2008


In order to relate the story that led up to Hanukkah, we will need to start with Antiochus III, the King of Syria, his  reign was from 3538 to 3574 (222-186 B.C.E.). He warred with King Ptolemy of Egypt over the possession of the Land of Israel. Antiochus III was victorious and the Land of Israel was added to his empire. At the beginning, he was favorably disposed toward the Jews and accorded them some privileges. Later on, he too was beaten by the Romans and was compelled to pay heavy taxes, the burden fell upon the various peoples of his empire who were forced to furnish the heavy gold that was required of him by the Romans. When Antiochus died, his son Seleucus IV took over, and Jews were  oppressed  even further.

Along with the woes from the outside was the grave danger that endangered Judaism from within. The pressure of the Hellenists (people who accepted idol-worship and the Syrian way of life) was on the rise. Yochanan, the High Priest, was able to foresee the danger to Judaism from the infiltration of Syrian-Greek sway into the Holy Land. For, in dissimilarity to the best of superficial splendor held by the Greeks and Syrians, Judaism emphasizes truth and moral purity, as commanded by G-d in the holy Torah. The Jewish people could by no means give up their belief in G-d and agree to the idol-worship of the Syrians.

Yochanan as a result opposed to any attempt on the part of the Jewish Hellenists to establish Greek and Syrian customs into the land. The Hellenists detested him. One of them told the King’s commissioner that in the treasury of the Temple there was a great deal of riches. He banned the study of Torah and the performance of its commands, and defiled the Holy Temple in Jerusalem with Greek idols

The wealth in the treasury consisted of the offerings of "half a shekel" made by all adult Jews once a year. This money was for the purpose of the sacrifices on the altar, as well as for repairing and improving the Temple building.  Additionally part of the treasury was consign to an orphans’ funds which were deposited for them until they became of age. Seleucus needed money in order to pay the Romans. He sent his minister Helyodros to take the money from the treasury of the Temple. In unsuccessfully Yochanan, the High Priest, plead with him not to do it. Helyodros did not take note and entered the gate of the Temple. However, suddenly, he became pale with fright. The next moment he fainted and fell to the ground. After Helyodros came to, he did not have the courage enter again.

A little, enormously outnumbered group of Jews waged battle in opposition to the forceful Greek armies, and drove them out of the land. Reclaiming the Holy Temple, on the 25th of Kislev, they wished to light the Temple's menorah ("candelabra"), only to realize that the Greeks had polluted practically all the oil. All that remained was one cruse of pure oil, adequate to last one night – and it would take eight days to obtain new, pure oil.

Miraculously, the one-day supply of oil lasted eight days and nights, and the holiday of Hanukkah was established.

To memorialize and make known these miracles, we light the Hanukkah menorah (also known as a chanukiah) on each of the eight nights of Hanukkah. This year, we start lighting the menorah on Sunday evening, December 21, 2008

 There were plentiful miracles, large and small, accompany the deliverance of Israel from Hellenic control and the reclaiming of the Holy Temple as the lighthouse of G-d. Nevertheless, there is one specific miracle that is the sum and substance of Hanukkah: the miracle of the small cruse of pure oil that burned for eight days.

The challenge faced by the Jewish people at that time was unlike any that had confronted them before.. Only the cruse of pure oil the heart of the Jewish soul, from which stems the Jews natural self-sacrificial loyalty to G-d could illuminate the way out of the of Hella. Only by evoking this inner reserve of uncontainable oil were we able to banish the pagan trespasser from G-d's home and relight the torch of Israel as a light unto the nations.

During the eight days of Hanukkah, we add the V'al Hanissim ("And for the miracles...") section in the amidah (daily silent prayers) and in the Grace after Meals. Here  we sum up the miracles of the Maccabee triumph, and thank G‑d for the "miracles, deliverance, almighty deeds, saving acts and wonders" that He produced for our ancestors.

Hanukkah Gelt  Gifts (Money)

 During Hanukkah it is traditional to give gelt (money) to children, so that we can teach them to give some of it to charity. Some have the admirable custom of gelt-giving each weeknight of Hanukkah.. In Chabad, it is customary to give gelt every night, but to hand out a heftier sum on the fourth or fifth night.

About that dridel

 

. dreidel (spinning top)

Jewish children resorted to learning Torah in outlying areas and forests. Even this plan was not infallible, for the enemy had many patrols. The children therefore brought along small tops that they would promptly pull out and play with after hiding away their texts, so that they could pretend to be merely playing games.

 

Shalom,

Geketa

Hear, O Israel the L-rd our G-d,the L-rd is one http://www.DHGBoutique.com
+0
Peter Fogel

1470
7259 Posts
7259
Invite Me as a Friend
Top 25 Poster
Person Of The Week
Re: Hanukkah
12/8/2008 11:53:11 AM

Hi Geketa,

What a great explanation about Chanukkah. Despite the great difficulties and oppression of that period the few against the hordes were victorious. The period following the victory was a transformation and rebuilding.

Today Chanukkah is a joyous holiday and it's also known as the Festival of Lights. Children love this holiday and aside from Purim it's one of the happiest holiday.

Thanks for your efforts and a great write up.

Shalom,

Peter

 

 

Peter Fogel
Babylon 7
+0
Re: Hanukkah
12/8/2008 1:33:13 PM

Shalom Geketa!

I have celebrated this festival and the background story to this is very strong.The Romans were very nasty to the jews but were defeated at last and they could reinstall the Torah scroll in the temple again.

Thanks for the very detailed story and the facts about this.

In fact, I have a Hanukkah Menorah here at home.

Mattias Kroon Affiliate Creative Marketer http://moneymaker4554.blogspot.com/
+0
Jim
Jim Allen

5817
11252 Posts
11252
Invite Me as a Friend
Top 25 Poster
Person Of The Week
Re: Hanukkah
12/8/2008 10:48:50 PM

 Thanks Geketa, I love to learn about the different ways we celebrate this time of year.

Hope your wishes come true.  Enjoy the celebrations.

Jim

 

May Wisdom and the knowledge you gained go with you,



Jim Allen III
Skype: JAllen3D
Everything You Need For Online Success


+0
Nick Sym

4679
23156 Posts
23156
Invite Me as a Friend
Top 25 Poster
Person Of The Week
Re: Hanukkah
12/9/2008 1:45:52 AM
Shalom Geketa!

Breast Cancer Awareness On My Site! http://www.freewebs.com/nicksym Free exposure that works http://www.webbizinsider.com/Home.asp?RID=55242
+0


facebook
Like us on Facebook!