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Introduction

The History of Chanukah

The Menorah Files

How to Celebrate Chanukah

Stories

Thoughts on Chanukah

   Short tidbits

   Menorah For Dummies

The Effects of Chanukah

Two Menoros

The Fire In The Flint

Chanukah Mnemonics

To Burn or Not to Burn (or both!)

Customs of Chanukah

Long(er) Essays

Chanukah and Moshiach

Chasidic Discourse - Mai Chanukah

Q & A

Letters From the Rebbe

Children's Corner

The Significance of Chanukah

 
 Chanukah Mnemonics Customs of Chanukah


To Burn or Not to Burn (or both!)

The miracle of Chanuka was that one flask of oil burned for eight days. Some say the oil burned, but new oil miraculously appeared each day. Some say the oil wasn't really burning, that the flame was miraculous. The theories go on and on. Why do we limit G-d with our logic? Say simply the flame was burning oil, but the oil was not burning!

G-d can do anything. He could even, as the saying goes, "fit an elephant through the eye of a needle." So, how would He do it? Would He make the elephant smaller? Or would He expand the eye of the needle?

Neither. The elephant would remain big, the eye of the needle small. And He would fit the elephant through the eye of the needle. Illogical? True. But logic is just another of His creations. He who created logic is permitted to disregard it.

When the world was made and done, G-d was left with two lights: A light of boundless energy that encompasses all things and gives them being, but transcends them, and a penetrating light that vitalizes all things but is limited and darkened by them.

The first light is a pure expression of "there is none else but He", so from it extend miracles, acts that deny the world any significance. The second light is an expression of His desire there be a world, so from it extends the natural order of things, a world of elements behaving as though they are directed by their own properties.

But G-d did not want a world where there are two gods -- one of Nature and one of the supernatural. So He made the two lights to play in harmony, to reveal that they both shine from one Source.

How does He do it? Does He blunt the miracles so they could fit into the natural order? Or does He change the nature of things to compromise with the miracles?

Neither. The properties of each thing remain the same, the natural order runs according to its own laws, and miracles of the highest order occur. The elephant in the eye of the needle, the infinite within the finite. Impossible? Plant a seed and watch it grow. And greater by order of magnitude: Plant good deeds and watch with wonder the miracles that ensue.

 Chanukah Mnemonics Customs of Chanukah



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