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History Of Hanukkah Essay

1224 words - 5 pages

The History of Hanukkah

Chester Blunt Jr.


Instructor: William Umstetter

May 19, 2013

In this paper titled The History of Hanukkah Ido not use first person in APA plan to touch on key points of the origin of Hanukkah, what time of the year is it celebrated, the various religious practices that are associated with Hanukkah, and also the theological or cultural differences that might lead to differences in the observance of the holy day by the various branches of Judaism. I hope that in my readings you will get a better understanding for the tradition of Hanukkah. Double space most everything in APA

The Jewish festival of Hanukkah started ...view middle of the document...

With the feeling of great accomplishment they wanted to celebrate their victory but were unable to celebrate the Sukkot holiday during its correct time in autumn. They decided to celebrate the Sukkot at the time of the rededication of the temple which was held on the 25th day of the month of Kislov in the year of 168 B.C.E. In the Hebrew calendar this time normally falls between November and December. The Sukkot holiday is held for seven days, so on the eighth days they celebrated the rededication which is now called Hanukkah. Many years after these events a Jewish historian named Flavius Josephus wrote about the origin of the holiday and called it the Festival of Lights. He used this term in reference to the holiday because of the victory that had taken place. He compared the event with images of light. Many Jewish people still refer to Hanukkah as the Festival of Lights.

Hanukkah has many traditions that are strictly followed in the celebration of the festival. The various traditions that are associated with Hanukkah include prayers, candle lighting, songs, food, and gifts. On the day of prayers there are also blessing that are offered during the lighting of the candles on a special apparatus called a candelabrum. Hanukkah is celebrated by the entire Jewish family at one time. There are three blessing that are recited during the prayers.

According to the website Hanukkah Celebration (2008) there are three blessing that are recited during Hanukkah:

First is: Baruch ata Ado-nai, Elo-heinu Melech ha'olam, Asher kid'shanu b'mitzvosav v'tzivanu l'hadlik ner shel Chanukah. This blessing means; Blessed are You, Hashem our G-d, King of the universe, Who has sanctified us with His commandments, and has commanded us to Kindle the Chanukah light. The second blessing is; Baruch ata Ado-nai, Elo-heinu Melech ha'olam, She'asah nisim la'avoseinu, bayamim ha'hem baz'man hazeh. This blessing means, Blessed are You, Hashem our G-d, King of the universe, Who has wrought miracles for our forefathers, in those days at this season. The final blessing is, Baruch ata Ado-nai, Elo-heinu Melech ha'olam, She'hecheyanu, vekiyemanu vehigi'anu laz'man hazeh. This blessing means, Blessed are You, Hashem our G-d, King of the universe, Who has kept us alive, sustained us, and brought us to this season. ("Happy Hanukkah", 2008)

With praying and the blessing the lighting of the candles holds a significant part in Hanukkah celebration. It is said that the lighting of the candles is to pay tribute to the Miracle of Oil. Legend has it that a small amount of purified oil was found...

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