Sunday, December 9, 2012

Lingering at the Chanukah Candles

I heard something about Chanukah that I wanted to share with you.

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.



And pray.

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 you can take this special inspiration with you long after Chanukah is gone.

Have a happy and enlightening Chanukah!


  1. Thanks Devo! It's really true, there's something really special about it that affects everyone... It has that ability-to touch every and any person. And what you said about the candles, to not just walk away after they're lit, is so true! I think that is the very things that shows that a person is utilizing the power of Chanukah--to stop and watch those candles and think about what they represent, and pause for a small prayer... It's a very special opportunity for tefilah, and we shouldn't miss out by just going through the motions-saying the brachos, lighting, and walking away to latkes and parties, without pausing and using this unique opportunity. We should all use this special time wisely, for tefilah! And may we all merit to experience our own Chanukah miracles within our own lives! ~Happy Cahnukah~

  2. Wow. I really liked that and I want to internalize the message and be inpsired, but every time I try something else happens that stops me from being able to sit, think and daven. Are there other ways to get that same inspiration? Any more ideas? Thank you!!! :)

  3. Shana-Thank you. It's true. The time at the candles is a special time...and I hope you are able to use it to the fullest. Amen to your bracha!

    Tmmima-It's true that this suggestion isn't so practical for everyone. Not everyone is able to spend time at the candles after they are lit. There may be too many other things going on in the house to actually take the time to daven at the candles. But it's not the only way to bring the spirituality of Chanukah into your heart and into your life. Different things work for different people.

    For some it may be taking some time at night to learn with a friend or read some divrei torah about Chanukah-even after those candles are extinguished.
    For others it may be by making their Chanukah meaningful and special through song-there is something powerful about the singing after the candles have been lit (or even later on in the night). Turn up the music and sing along! Or maybe you can arrange a kumzitz with some of your friends and be inspired together.

    Figure out what might work for you.

    There's no one answer. Each person is an individual and different things touch different people. You may need to be creative and use your mind/heart to try to come up with something that you feel can impact you but you can take Chanukah with you even after this short 8 day period is over. It it a special yom tov of light in the darkness, of finding Hashem where you least expect it.

    Look out for can find Him!

  4. THANK YOU HASHEM for giving me the mitzvah of lighting Chanukah candles.

    THANK YOU HASHEM for giving me Chanukah candles to light.

    THANK YOU HASHEM for giving me a Chanukah menorah.

    THANK YOU HASHEM for giving me matches to light the candles.

    THANK YOU HASHEM for giving me two good eyes, so I can see the lights.

    THANK YOU HASHEM for giving me a siddur, so I can do the mitzvah correctly.

    Even if you read this after Chanukah, you can still THANK HASHEM for the Chanukah that just passed.


You made it to the end of this post! What do you think about it?