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The very first action of God is to create light – “y’hi or” and God immediately saw “ki tov”, that it was good (Genesis 1: 3-4). Ever after light has been seen as the positive side of existence and life on this planet is impossible without it. But sometimes evil sources reverse the qualities of light and darkness. Isaiah said (5:20) “Ah, those who call evil good and good evil; who present darkness as light and light as darkness; who present bitter as sweet and sweet as bitter. Those who are so wise – in their own opinion.” This Chanukkah we see supposed leaders in Israel who would pervert the spirit of the Declaration of Independence and seek exclusion rather than inclusion, disharmony over shalom. Who would twist the meaning of light and darkness. Chanukkah urges us to celebrate the true quality of light – that brings happiness and warmth and pride in our Jewishness. As we say – Chag Sameach – may you have a joyful festival and may light increase for you night by night.

Rabbi Dr Andrew Goldstein


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