Jewish Journal News

The candle of spirit

SHARE THIS STORY

HELP SUPPORT JEWISH JOURNAL

The candle of spirit

Jewish Journal News

According to the Kabalistic creation narrative, G-d Shares a deep infinite light with the world at the very beginning of creation that turns out to be way too intense. An adjustment is made by means of a major cosmic energy “recalibration” that withdraws most of the light. That light is “stored” in the celestial warehouse to be enjoyed exclusively by the metaphysical residents of all the upper realms, including a full assortment of angels, souls, and the occasional “seraph” here and there.

What of the rest of the light though?

According to this same mystical tradition, Hashem gathered the remainder of the light and buried it in the Hebrew letters and words of Torah!

The war that the Greeks waged on the Jews was not on the culture of Judaism: they were actually OK with that. It was an assault on the very soul of Judaism, what we might call “Yiddishkeit.” They said, “Keep your bagels and lox,” and we’ll even incorporate ‘oy vey’ and ‘kvetch’ into our Greek language, but forget about G-d and spiritual light!”

The miracle of Hanukkah on the books; is that we won the war and the oil lasted for eight days. But the Kabbalah/inner miracle of Hanukkah is much deeper. The Jewish people finding the fortitude to lean into an unpopular truth, embracing it with passion and pride – that was an equally powerful statement, and another great reason to celebrate. When we light our menorahs for the first time this year, we are remembering a great moment in our history, but in doing so we are also signaling our desire for a deeper awareness and a more meaningful and spiritually authentic Jewish experience.

The renaissance of Jewish life and awareness that we celebrate here on the North Shore, and throughout the Jewish world, is our modern-day Hanukkah miracle.

As we gaze into the lights, surrounded by the people we love, we realize that G-d had yet another hiding place for his light; nestled cozily, inside each and every one of us!

Rabbi Yossi Lipsker is the director of Chabad of the North Shore.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Jewish Journal is reader supported

Jewish Journal is reader supported