What is the meaning of Hanukkah? –

Beginning on Sunday, December 22, and ending on Monday, December 30, millions of people and families around the world will celebrate the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah (sometimes spelled Hanukkah). The holiday is widely known as the Festival of Lights. Let’s see then what it is and what is the meaning of Hanukkah.

What is the meaning of Hanukkah?

The Hebrew word Hanukkah means “dedication” and this holiday commemorates the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem.

In 164 a. C., a band of jewish warriors called Maccabees, under the command of a man named Judas Maccabee, defeated the greek army (Seleucid) who had captured the city of Jerusalem in 200 B.C. C. Judah and his countrymen they reclaimed the Holy Temple in Jerusalem and sought to relight their menorah (an oil-based candle holder). They only found enough oil purified for keep the menorah lit for a day. Nevertheless, the oil kept the menorah lit for 8 daysafter which ritually purified oil became available.

To commemorate these events, the annual Hanukkah party was created.. As in the Jewish holiday of Passover, Hanukkah celebrate freedom from oppression. It also supports and celebrates freedom of religious expression.

Hanukkah begins on the 25th of Kislev, the ninth month of the Jewish ecclesiastical year. This date can occur from the end of November to the end of December of the Gregorian calendar, which is the civil calendar that is followed almost everywhere in the world.

Hanukkah celebrations

A centerpiece of Hanukkah is the lighting of the menorah. Contains eight candles, plus a slot center for the shamash (“servant”), which is used to light the other eight candles. On the first night of Hanukkah, a single candle is lit. Each following night, an additional candle is lit, so the eight are lit on the last night. Families and friends often gather and recite traditional blessings or sing songs together while lighting the menorah.

To commemorate the miraculous oil from which the holiday originated, it is traditional serve food fried in oil. Latkes, or potato cakes, are a common food, as are sufganiot, or jelly doughnuts.

The children receive gifts in money (gelt), other types of gifts or traditional treats such as nuts and raisins. Donating to charity for children and adults is encouraged.

Another revered tradition is a game that children often play with a dreidel, a four-sided spinner containing letters of the Hebrew alphabet. The letters are nun, gimmel, hey and shin, an acronym for “nes gadol hayah sham”, which means “a great miracle happened there”. Each player puts a piece of candy or a coin into the pot, or takes pieces out of the pot, depending on their spin of the dreidel. When the dreidel stops spinning, the up letter means what the player must do. Shin = add a piece to the pot, hey = take half the pot, gimel = take the pot, nun = do nothing.

Hanukkah is not specified in the Torah, so its religious significance is less to some, but it remains a popular and revered holiday in Jewish culture. Communities sometimes gather to light large menorahs in the open air.to sing together and share meals.

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