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CHANUKAH : After the light

Light in Darkness. 2

We speak of 'dark deeds', we speak of the 'darkness' in the souls of those who commit them. How can we bring light to play on these? How can we 'bring things to light' that others have buried deep down in the hope that nobody will see them? What will this achieve, will the light of Day clarify what has been done, dissipate the darkness of the deeds? Bring justice to both the perpetrators and the victims? Even God needed Light before God could ''see that it was good....''

Light in Darkness: 3.

Ignorance is Darkness. A dark hole of nothingness where knowledge and wisdom should be. It is surely no coincidence that the 'Aufklärung' in German - 'the opening up, the clearing-up and resolution of confusion - is translated as 'Enlightenment' in English. Let us shed light on those issues which matter but are often overlooked, which stay in the shadows. Shine a light into the Darkness all around us..... and let us hope that he spread of Knowledge might also lead to a spread of Understanding and of Wisdom. We need more than mere data for that.

Light in Darkness: 4

Each weekday was marked with a cycle of sunrise, getting up, going to work, coming back, getting ready for the evening - and at sunset a time to light the lamp. On Shabbat though, a minimum of two lamps was required, even though the blessing is in the singular - ''lehadlik Ner shel Shabbat'. In an age where light is found so easily at the touch of a finger on a switch it is so easy to forget what this meant. Like replacing a weak light bulb with a stronger one. On Shabbat the room would look different and the people in it too. Clearer, happier. Lighter and Brighter. A weekly miracle. Nes Gadol yihyeh Poh.... Let this miracle shine around us this Shabbat Chanukah too.

Rabbi Dr Walter Rothschild, Berlin.


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