As the last cold latke gets tossed into the microwave oven, and the candle wax is scraped off the menorah, this year’s Hanukkah winds down. We look out into the world and see hope and fear, success and failure, as always. Hmmm.
What is the “point” of celebrating Hanukkah, anyway?
A Jewish response to Christmas? An excuse to eat fried foods? A historical series of battles, defeating a military giant? Clinging stubbornly to one’s own culture, in the face of foreign challengers?
Yes, all of that…sort of. But that’s only the surface.
Columnist Daniel Greenfield declares it a “Dangerous Holiday”, and that it surely is.
In the end the answer is hinted at by the declaration “Am Yisrael Chai”; “The People of Israel Live”. As the Jews survive, against all odds… indeed, contrary to all reason, then the world has hope.
Hanukkah, it’s successes, and it’s failures, shows us once again that everything exists because G-d wills it to be so.