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The Lights We Truly Need to Kindle

11/27/2018 09:15:59 AM


Rabbi Ron Segal

It is at this point of the year that nightfall seems to come ever earlier and grow progressively darker with each passing day.  This year, though, it similarly - and alarmingly – strikes me that many parts of our country and world are also experiencing a kind of darkness that seems to intensify with each passing day.  Thus, I’ve been awaiting with even greater anticipation than usual the arrival of this year’s Chanukah season and reflecting upon its enduring message and focus on light.  However, it is not merely the new light of the Chanukah candles that will soon shine in our menorahs that is awaiting our blessing this year.  At this particular time, I especially believe we also need to dispel the darkness surrounding us (and within us) by rekindling lights within our individual hearts and spirits this Chanukah as well. 

“Chag Urim Sameach - Happy Festival of Lights” is one of the traditional greetings exchanged during Chanukah.  This coming Sunday evening, as we recite the blessings and light our menorah, why not commit to kindling some internal lights as well this year.  Perhaps we can strive to become more enlightened about a difficult subject, or commit to interacting with a greater sense of lightheartedness, or endeavor to step lightly when we know that sensitive matters are at hand, or commit to finding and experiencing something delightful each and every day. 

Imagine the light we can shine into the darkness this Chanukah if we not only place a menorah in the window, but also ignite and nurture lights within our own hearts.  Chag Urim Sameach – may it indeed be a happy and joyous festival filled with boundless new light for all of us and our world.

Tue, February 18 2020 23 Sh'vat 5780