The everlasting light

26.12.2011                      30.Kislev. 5772                       Channuka 6                      Rosch Chodesch 1

Judentum:

The everlasting light

‘And Pharaoh’s cup was in my hand; and I took the grapes, and pressed them into Pharaoh’s cup’ (Miketz; Genesis 40:11).

The Festival of Hanukka celebrates two momentous and fateful victories of Judea over Greco-Syria in the second century before the Common Era, during the period of the Second Temple. Greco-Syria was one of three heirs to the political and cultural hegemony of Alexander the Great, a masterful military tactician whose goal was to spread Hellenistic culture throughout the “Fertile Crescent.” Despite the brevity of his life, he succeeded to an amazing extent – and, miraculously, he allowed the State of Judea to maintain its municipal and religious independence.
Jewish lore records that when Alexander the Great entered the gates of Jerusalem, the High Priest Shimon the Righteous came out to greet him. The mighty conqueror bowed before the High Priest, exclaiming that before every battle, in his dreams, he received a blessing for victory from the High Priest. Hence Judea received a special dispensation and that year every male baby born was named Alexander….