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Ḥanukah: Sukkot Sheni and the Brumalia

With the dissemination and availability of 2 Maccabees (preserved in the Catholic and Orthodox Christian cannons), more Jews are learning that the eight day festival of lights originated as a renewal of the eight day festival of Sukkot.  That essential Fall pilgrimage and fertility festival (which included the joyous water-drawing festival, Simchat Bet haShoeva) was . . . → Continue reading: Ḥanukah: Sukkot Sheni and the Brumalia

The Longest Darkest Night of the Year

Although the significance of Ḥanukah is masked by both its commercialization (in competition with Christmas) and its status as a “minor” or post-biblical Jewish holiday, there are important reasons to believe that it is ancient, poorly understood, and quite deep.

Before he passed away this past year, Rabbi Zelig Scharfstein of blessed memory, taught me . . . → Continue reading: The Longest Darkest Night of the Year

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