The Eternal Spirit of The Jewish People

chanuka inner vibe jewish spirit menorah parsha Jun 21, 2024

What is the secret of the Jewish spirit? Despite persecution throughout world history, the Jews survived the mightiest empires. The secret of the Menorah, which Kabbalah and Chassidut elaborate upon, captures the unity and essence of Divine connection or self-sacrifice, which is our essence.  

The Menorah is a symbol of the Jewish people. Beyond its profound symbolism, it carries a message of hope and strength.  

In our Parsha, B'Haalotcha, the Torah begins with the process of kindling the Menorah.  This week's Haftara (a portion from the prophets read every Shabbat after the Torah portion) is from Zachariah chapter 4.  

The prophet Zachariah sees the image of the intact Menorah as a message of solace and comfort in the imminent return of the people to the land of Israel.  Zechariah, who prophesized during the Babylonian exile and before the Jews were able to return to Israel, describes a vision of the menorah that would stand in a rebuilt temple.

The prophet is told that the menorah symbolizes the restoration of the kingdom of Judaea under the new king Zerubavel: "Not by might and not by power but by my [Divine] spirit."   The message of the Torah is eternal and gives us strength now, just as it has in the past. The secret of the Jewish people is intertwined with the message of light, unity, and the enduring spirit of Hashem, which guides and protects us.

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