Wednesday, December 5, 2007
11:39:00 AM EST
Tradition. Tradition. Why do we do the things we do?
Tradition. Often times there is no explanation for what we do; the answer-tradition.
There is nothing wrong with tradition, for there often define and confirm our beliefs, values and way of life. But I also believe that there for the tradition to truly carry weigh, there must be meaning behind it.
Why do we light eight candles? Why jelly doughnuts and laktes? Why cheese? Tradition, yes, but there are reasons that give each true meaning.
We fry foods in oil to remember the miracle of the Oil that lasted eight days. We eat sweets and dairy to remind ourselves we can once again partake of the sweetness and nurture of Torah.
This year, while Mark has been away, I given much thought to our own tradition and the meanings that they have, not only to our faith, but our life together.
For us, Hanukkah is the time of the year when we realize the love we shared and found against fear of commitment to become one.
For us, the simple, pure light reminds us of Messiah, the Light of the World.
For us, sweet potato latkes are a celebration of our Sephardi roots. The doughnuts are a sweet treat, a reminder of the sweetness of G-d and how He provides for us. The sweetness of His Torah and the sweetness of freedom.
Hanukkah is a time of fun for us, but also a time of reflection. A time we enjoy greatly. And really, nothing has changed.
We kindle the candles together and say the blessings. He is doing it now in Iraq, I will here in several hours. Mark will call in a few hours and we will wish each a Happy Hanukkah. We will reflect on Hanukkah past, the one we are sharing now, knowing that this memory will be a quilt square in the Hanukkahs to come.
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