• December 2, 2022
  • 8 5783, Kislev
  • פרשת ויצא

What is Chanuka: A Look at the Sources

What is Chanuka: A Look at the Sources

Eight days of lights, the most popularly celebrated holiday in the world, and only a few pages of sources in the Talmud. Why is this? We will examine Chanuka in the Talmud, the Siddur, the Midrash, and the Rishonim in order to understand “What is Chanuka?”

October 30, 2014 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
What is Chanuka: A Look at the Sources: Lesson 1
Class description

Who were the Maccabees? Who was Judith? And does Adam have anything to do with Chanukah? It’s complicated!: Tonight is an overview of some extra-canonical literature that focuses on the events that led to the Chanukah celebration. We will shed some light on two narratives of Chanukah: One that focuses on the Material, and the other that sees it as the quintessential holiday of Torah sheb’al peh. Tonight some historical background and its impact on Jewish tradition, and halacha. For the first, and probably only, time all texts will be presented in powerpoint. Whoo hoo!

November 6, 2014 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
What is Chanuka: A Look at the Sources: Lesson 2
Class description

Tracing the Laws of Chanukah through the Codes…: After we finish with our slide show we’re beginning with the Tur’s introduction to the Laws of Chanukah and the Beit Yosef’s commentary. From there, we will investigate the many reasons given for why the Chanukah miracle was necessary. Looking forward to seeing you a bit earlier than last week!

November 13, 2014 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
What is Chanuka: A Look at the Sources: Lesson 3
Class description

Since when do you have a miracle that seems unnecessary?: Last week the Beit Yosef tried to explain why all eight days were miraculous even though they had oil for one day. Now, the Maharal weighs in on what the miracle is, but then a later authority questions why pure oil was necessary at all? Suppose you gave a miracle that nobody needed. What was the point? Tonight all will be revealed.

November 20, 2014 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
What is Chanuka: A Look at the Sources: Lesson 4
Class description

Was the Miracle of the Oil Necessary????: And if it wasn’t what purpose did it serve? The Sefer P’nai Yehoshua asks the question and gives us an answer. If there’s time we’ll look at the next siman in the Beit Yosef.

November 27, 2014 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
What is Chanuka: A Look at the Sources: Lesson 5
Class description

A tour through the Tur and Beit Yosef on Hilchot Chanukah: Through the details connected to candle lighting, we’ll see the multi-faceted essence of this mitzvah and through it, a lens for the whole holiday.

December 4, 2014 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
What is Chanuka: A Look at the Sources: Lesson 6
Class description

What is the optimal place for a Chanukiya, and why?: Publicizing the miracle: Variations on a theme from the Beit Yosef’s anthology of the rishonim. Tonight we’ll finish the siman, and get on with the next. See you tonight!

December 11, 2014 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
What is Chanuka: A Look at the Sources: Lesson 7
Class description

How low is too low; how high is too high!: A lesser known halacha applies to where one should ideally place the Menorah. We will look at why there are limits regarding why the Menorah shouldn’t be too high or low. After we finish this siman of the Tur, we will look at the spitritual significance of the halachas we have learned, and the sacred power of these rituals. It’s time to prepare for Chanukah as we get ready to give thanks and praise.

December 18, 2014 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
What is Chanuka: A Look at the Sources: Lesson 8
Class description

Reviewing the major themes of Chanukah…: …through Midrash, Tefila, and a dash of history with an eye on this conflict as a distant mirror for Chanukah b’zman hazeh. Chanukah Sameyach!