I and Thou: Hanukkah Night 8

Speaking as a non-Jewish bystander who profoundly appreciates the Jewish faith, tradition, and the stories surrounding it, I share the meaning of Hanukkah.


Hanukkah is known as the Festival of Lights. It is an eight-day holiday to signify the burning of one jar of oil that lasted eight nights: hence the eight candles on the menorah.

According to the legend, when the Maccabees entered the Temple and began to reclaim it from the Greeks, they immediately relit the ner tamidwhich burned constantly in the Temple and has a parallel in our synagogues to this day. In the Temple, they found a single jar of oil, which was sufficient for only one day. The messenger who was sent to secure additional oil took eight days to complete his mission, and miraculously, the single jar of oil continued to burn until his return. The rabbis of the Talmud attributed the eight days of Hanukkah to the miracle of this single jar of oil.


So, when exactly did this event occur? There is an approximate date of Hanukkah beginning around 2o0 BC. It is not mentioned in The Bible, yet it signifies a Godly moment – a miracle, if you will.

The word “Hanukkah” means “dedication” in Hebrew.

Hanukkah is also commemorating the rededication of the Second Temple in Jerusalem, known as the Maccabean Revolt. This historic event took place in the second century BC. According to the Hebrew calendar, this Jewish holiday begins on the 25th of Kislev and typically occurs in November or December.

Image Credit: My Jewish learning dot com

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