There are specific halachos of what types of wicks are allowed to be used when lighting candles for shabbos. Interestingly, certain wicks that are not permitted to be used for shabbos candles are allowed to be used to light the Chanukah menorah.
There is an amazing lesson we can take from this.
We know that a flame is compared to the neshama of a person like it says, ner Hashem nishmas adam.
We can see from here the those neshamos who are not affected by the kedushah of shabbos, who are not touched by the purity and holiness of the shabbos candles, can be affected by the Chanukah lights. There is something so special and uplifting about the Chanukah candles that it can touch anybody and can bring them to greater heights in their avodas Hashem.
The key is to let it in. To open up your heart and to let the purity of the flames enter your very being and allow it to penetrate your soul.
I think the answer to how you can be affected by the holiness of the Chanukah candles is dependent on what you do after those candles are lit. Do you quickly walk away and get busy with other things or do you linger there for a bit longer?
You can spend a little bit of time at the menorah after the flames have been lit and let the fire ignite your soul. Just look at the candles, at those burning lights.
Use those few moments at the candles...for a spiritual awakening...for growth and inspiration.
Talk to Hashem.
He's your Father.
He's listening to you.
Tell Him about whatever is inside you. Things that are bothering you. Things you want. Changes you'd like to see in your life. Changes you wish you can see in yourself. Ask Him for help.
And...don't forget to thank Him. He gives you so much blessing. Think about those things too...and show your appreciation.
The time you spend at the candles can be utilized for moments of introspection and connection.
There is something interesting about candles. If you hold it in your hand, no matter which way you turn the candle, the flame will always be reaching upwards.
And the same is true with a neshama, with every Jewish soul. No matter which way you turn it, no matter what situation a person is in, there is always that pintele yid, that Jewish flame inside of them. There is always a yearning to become better. A Jew can be put in the most trying situation but their soul is like a flame, always reaching upwards-to greater spiritual levels.
When you stand in front of the Chanukah menorah this year, look at the candles and watch the flames go higher. Let that little spark, that pintele yid inside your soul be ignited by the beauty of the Chanukah candles. Daven to Hashem to help you reach higher heights in your avodas Hashem, to keep climbing up and up just like those candles.
And may the flame and excitement inside your heart never be extinguished...so you can take this special inspiration with you long after Chanukah is gone.
Have a happy and enlightening Chanukah!