Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights, is a celebration of the victory of the Maccabees and the rededication of the Jerusalem Temple. It also commemorates the miracle of the oil that burned for 8 days.
Many Jewish holidays commemorate events invested with historical and religious meaning. Hanukkah means "dedication," and it commemorates the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem after its desecration by foreign forces. The celebration also reaffirms the continuing struggle to live by God's commandments and to lead Jewish lives.
When all is said and done, perhaps the most important message of Hanukkah may be found in the name of the holiday itself: Dedication. When Jews have dedicated themselves, through faith and action, to the pursuit of high religious and human ideals, Judaism has been strong. That imperative, to strengthen our religion and our people, remains an important challenge at this season, in every generation. Hanukkah begins this year (5765/2004) on the evening of December 7th.
There are three major sections to our Hanukkah pages:
Some information from:
- Summary: a brief summary of what Hanukkah is
- History: a more detailed history of Hanukkah
- Traditons: a detailed description of the tradtions
Jewish Outreach Institute
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