6 Lessons Hanukkah Can Teach Us

What does hanukkah mean for you?


During Hanukkah, our Jewish Festival of Lights, we light a menorah in every household. The menorah is placed in a doorway or window. It is also lit in synagogues and other public places, malls and parks all over the world.

Since we, as Jews, spend eight days close to Hanukah lights, we must listen carefully to what the candles are saying. So what are the flickering flames telling us? Here are some messages:

a. Never be afraid to stand up for what’s right. Judah Maccabee and his group of Jewish warriors had terribly low chances of winning, but that didn’t stop them. They believed they could win. With faith in their hearts, they entered the battle of their lives—and won. We can do the same.

As Rabbi Hillel so famously said, “If I am not for myself, who will be for me? If I am only for myself, what am I? And if not now, when?”

b. Always try to add more goodness to your life. Sure, a single flame was good enough for yesterday, but today needs to be even better.

c. A little light goes a long way. No matter how dark it is outside, a candle of goodness can change darkness into light.

d. Take it to the streets. Hanukah is unique in that its main mitzvah is observed in public. Hanukah teaches us to shine outwards into our surroundings.

E. Open our eyes and your heart so you can see the miracles before you everyday. As Albert Einstein said, “There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”

F. Take the first step and then take it one day at a time. Miracles only happen when you take the first step. As the story of Hanukkah goes, when the Maccabees returned to their Temple after the war, the first thing they needed to do was to re-light the eternal flame. But they only had enough oil for one day. That didn’t stop them. The Maccabees decided it was time to re-light the eternal flame and that they had to do it. They started where they were, and took it one day at a time.

What is your favorite lesson? Explain why