Happy Hanukkah

The Jewish festival of Hanukkah begins this evening at sundown.  Jonathan Tobin at Commentary Contentions has a few words that explain the festival’s significance to Jews and non-Jews alike:

[T]he point about Hanukkah is that it exemplifies the spirit of a people who refuse to genuflect before the idols of the popular culture of their day. As such, Hanukkah is an important lesson for contemporary Jews who struggle to maintain their identity as minorities in the Diaspora, as well as for the people of Israel who remain under siege. For all the understandable universal appeal of Christmas and the specific resonance of the festival for Jews, this message of Hanukkah that inspires resistance to the forces that seek to denigrate religion and the values of faith is one that should appeal to all people of goodwill.

As a non-religious (not to be confused with anti-religious) person, I think this is an important message for all of us.  Freedom-loving people should all “tak[e] pride in remembrance of a successful struggle for political and religious freedom,” whether it was our own struggle or that of our kindred.

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Published in: on December 1, 2010 at 1:55 pm  Leave a Comment  

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