A People of Purity
“When the wicked Greek kingdom rose up against Your people Israel to make them forget Your Torah…”
There is a general principle that all things created by
What’s In a Name?
There is a famous saying, “Misery loves company.” And so the Greeks, uninterested in a portion in
The Hebrew spelling for Greece is Yavan, spelled with a yud, vav and (“final”) nun like this (יון). As can be detected from the spelling above, each of the letters that make up the name Yavan descend in a downward position in greater progression. Yud, the first letter of their name represents wisdom; the second letter, vav, represents action. Thus we see the essence of what the Greeks were all about. They took the intellect that
The Nation of Israel, on the other hand, was created to be a “holy nation and kingdom of priests”. What are the Jews about? Let us start with where our name comes from. “Jew”, Yehudi, is from the name Yehudah, spelled yud, hei, vav, dalet, hei (יהודה). These letters make up the Tetragrammaton, the holiest of the Divine names, with the addition of the letter dalet, which represents the idea of humility (dal is Hebrew for poor or humble). A Jew must humble himself before
Like day and night, light and darkness, the Greeks, and all those that continue to follow in their ways, fulfill the verse in Kohellet 2:14, “The fool walks in darkness.” In contrast to them, the Jewish People fulfill the verse in Mishlei 6:23, “For the (Divine) command is a candle, and the Torah is light.” As we light our Chanukah candles this year may we merit walking in the light of the first days of creation, in the era of redemption, speedily, in our days.