Hanukkah, a holiday commemorating the miracles surrounding the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem in the second century BCE

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What's done on Zos Chanuka?

I know people call the last day of Chanuka "Zos Chanuka" (taken from Bamidbar 7:84, read on that day). How is it specially commemorated if at all? I've heard it is, but know no details. I'm not ...
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Making a Seudah into a “Seudas Mitzvah”

The Rema in Hilchos Channukah Siman 670 Sif 2 writes that if zemiros and shvachos (songs and praise) are said by a Seudah on Channukah it becomes a "Seudas Mitzvah" (without this it only has in it ...
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3answers
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What exactly happened on the 25th of Kislev?

What historical event (if any) actually took place on the 25th of Kislev to cause that date to be the commencement of Chanukah?
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1answer
58 views

Using Havdallah Candle for Ner Channukah

The M"B in Siman 681 Sif-Katan 1 brings from the Bach and Ateres Zakanim that one may use the "Ner Channukah" first for Havdallah, put it out, then light it again for Channukah. This is even better ...
7
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2answers
370 views

Why did it take so long to make new oil?

The miracle of Chanukah that we commemorate was that the oil burned for 8 days, until they were able to replenish it. Why did it take 8 days to make new oil for the menorah? The normal process for ...
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1answer
184 views

Making Bracha on Channukah Candles in Jail

Someone who is in jail and is able to light Channukah candles, can/should he make a bracha? I don't know if being in Jail is considered to be like having a home that someone would have a chiyuv to ...
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57 views

Rambam in Mitzvah of Ner Channukah: why “Shemen and Neros”?

The Rambam writes in Hilchos Channukah Perek 4 Halacha 12: אפילו אין לו מה יאכל אלא מן הצדקה שואל או מוכר כסותו ולוקח שמן ונרות ומדליק What is the reason the Rambam wrote to take "Shemen and ...
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Rambam and Mitzvah of Ner Channukah (Chaviva hi ad ma'od)

The Rambam writes in Hilchos Channukah Perek 4 Halacha 12 מצות נר חנוכה מצוה חביבה היא עד מאד The Mitzvah of Ner Channukah is very "chaviv"/"dear" mitzva (please correct this translation.) What ...
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1answer
457 views

Celebrating the Hashmonaim as part of Hanukkah

The Hashmonaim are an integral part of the Hanukkah story. BUT after the story of Hanukkah the Hashmonite family did some very terrible things (wars between Jews etc) during their reign. Why do we ...
4
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1answer
382 views

Does the order of lights in a menorah face the house or the street?

I have always been taught that lights in a chanukiah should be inserted from right to left. So on the first four nights, only lights to the right of the shamash are lit (assuming a shamash in the ...
7
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3answers
235 views

Does the Kohen Gadol place his seal on oil used for the Menorah?

The Gemara in Shabbat 21b says: ...For when the Greeks entered the Temple, they defiled all the oils therein, and when the Hasmonean dynasty prevailed against and defeated them, they made ...
3
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1answer
97 views

How is the menora lit in the synagogue?

The menora in the synagogue is normally situated on the south side of the synagogue (O Ch 671:7). On which side of the menora is it lit? I can think of two options: The person lighting faces south ...
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4answers
258 views

Why don't we light the full menorah all 8 days?

If the reason we light candles on Chanukah is as a commemoration for the fact that the lights of the menorah burned for 8 days on fuel that was only sufficient for 1, why don't we light our menorahs ...
7
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1answer
318 views

We are Christian but have been invited to celebrate with friends tonight

We are invited to dinner tonight with some Jewish friends. I am excited that my six year old has such an opportunity to learn about another holiday, and the traditions taht accompany it. We've read ...
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1answer
113 views

“Prepare your Menora before Shabbat!”

In this recent "Halocho a Day" blog post, Danny Schoemann leads off with This week, Shabbat is also Erev Chanuka; prepare your Menora before Shabbat! This sounds like a nice idea for reducing ...
7
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1answer
159 views

Who is “the blaspheming foe” of Maoz Tzur?

In the song Maoz Tzur it says לְעֵת תָּכִין מַטְבֵּחַ מִצָּר הַמְנַבֵּחַ - which the OU translates as - When You will have prepared the slaughter for the blaspheming foe. Who is this ...
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80 views

Are you yotzei by lighting candles through a grama?

Does one fulfill the mitzvah of lighting candles (sabbath or chanukah) if done by a grama (indirect action)? Example
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0answers
79 views

Are there mystical underpinnings to Maccabi?

One of the explanations I have heard for the title מכבי is that it is an acronym for the pasuk 'מִי-כָמֹכָה בָּאֵלִם ה (Shemos 15:11). Is there any reason, mystical or otherwise that that pasuk (or ...
2
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1answer
68 views

Mitzvah of Ner Channukah — not until after churban habayis?

Someone said over today (in then name of the Sfes Emes) that the mitzvah of Ner Channukah didn't officially "start" until the 2nd Beis HaMikdash was destroyed, since it was established as somewhat of ...
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2answers
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Chanukiyot inside or out?

Shabbat 22a says that the halacha is that we should place the chanukiyah outside, within a hand-breadth of the door, to the left. In Israel I've seen people do this, placing the chanukiyah in a glass ...
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0answers
402 views

Calculation methods for intermediate time of chanukah lighting

We know that there are those who light chanukah candles at sunset and other at tzeis but there are some poskim lighting between at an intermediate time, for example : Rav Moshe Feinstein, Rav ...
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4answers
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Why aren't Purim and Channuka considered a violation of לֹא תֹסִפוּ?

It says in Devarim 4:2: לֹא תֹסִפוּ עַל הַדָּבָר אֲשֶׁר אָנֹכִי מְצַוֶּה אֶתְכֶם וְלֹא תִגְרְעוּ מִמֶּנּוּ לִשְׁמֹר אֶת מִצְוֹת יְ־הֹוָ־ה אֱלֹהֵיכֶם אֲשֶׁר אָנֹכִי מְצַוֶּה אֶתְכֶם ...
3
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1answer
65 views

Splitting up the rosh chodesh reading when another follows it

Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chayim 684:3 says (in my own translation): If rosh chodesh Teves comes out on Shabas, we remove three Torah scrolls, and six people read in the weekly section and one in that ...
2
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1answer
166 views

Maccabees and God's interaction

I looked over this answer Why isn't the book of the Maccabees part of the Jewish canon?, but I had further questions. I understand why its non canonical, i think its easier to understand when an ...
16
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4answers
263 views

First time lighting Chanuka candles is on second night

If one didn't light Chanuka candles until the second night, how many candles should he light? According to the reason that we add a candle a night is "Maalin Bakodesh" (we always add in holiness), ...
4
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1answer
140 views

Blowing out channukah candles before leaving the house

I know that as long as channukah candles are lit and the candle goes out by itself, you already did the mitzvah. I also know that you should have the channukah candles lit for at least 30 minutes. ...
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4answers
128 views

Lighting at a Chanukah Party

If I am eating at a Chanukah party in a different place than my home, may I light the Menorah at the location of the Chanukah party and be Yotzeh?
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Proper bracha on Chanuka candles: lhadlik ner (shel) Chanukah

Why do some people have the custom to say, in the blessing on the Chanukah lights, the word "Shel" before "Chanukah" and some do not? And I have been told some people put the words together as ...
3
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0answers
47 views

Theoretically speaking, would a Dreidle be Muqse on Shabbat? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Are dreidels muktzah? Would there be any problem with Dreidels on Shabbat? I discussed it with some people and we couldn't find any Halachic issues with it.
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2answers
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Why are the words כהיום הזה mentioned in Al Hanisim for Chanukah and nowhere for Purim and Pesach?

Why are the words כהיום הזה mentioned in Al Hanisim for Chanukah and not in Al Hanisim for Purim or at another appropriate place (in say the brocho of אשר גאלנו) for Pesach? Credit to Alex for ...
3
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1answer
118 views

Why are a couple words in Ma'oz Tzur different in some sidduriim?

The Text I am referring to is: רָעוֹת שָׂבְעָה נַפְשִׁי, בְּיָגוֹן כֹּחִי כָּלָה חַיַּי מֵרְרוּ בְקֹשִׁי, בְּשִׁעְבּוּד מַלְכוּת עֶגְלָה וּבְיָדוֹ הַגְּדוֹלָה הוֹצִיא אֶת הַסְּגֻלָּה חֵיל ...
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2answers
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She'asah nissim — why only past tense?

When we light the chanukiyah we say "she'asah nissim...b'yamim hahem bizman hazeh", with a past-tense "asah". While the miracles worked in the past (b'yamim hahem) are in the past (tautology alert!), ...
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2answers
245 views

Who is the composer of Haneiros Halolu?

When we light the Menora we say Haneiros Halolu. Who composed these words?
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1answer
107 views

Is there a minimum size for Chanuka flames?

Do the flames atop the chanukiya need to be a certain size to be valid? At the extreme, are tiny (but sustained) balls of blue flame sufficient?
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Is there a requirement to stay around after lighting Chanuka candles?

When lighting the Chanuka candles, I understand that they generally need to burn for a minimum of 30 minutes. Is there any requirement for the person who lit the Menorah to stay around for a certain ...
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3answers
150 views

What is the meaning of the words כהיום הזה in the prayer על הניסים ?

What is the meaning of the words כהיום הזה in the prayer על הניסים ? Are there options other than the Artscroll interpretation, "unquestionable clarity"?
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1answer
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Lighting the menora in shul and at home. How many brochos need be said?

Our shul has a minyan for mincha before sunset and for maariv after sunset. Between the two, the chanuka lights are kindled. There is a later maariv minyan; the chanuka lights are again kindled before ...
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9answers
369 views

When do you say a beracha on a minhag?

When lighting Hanukkah candles in the synagogue, we say a beracha "asher kidshanu b'mitzvotav.." on a minhag. Unlike kiddush in shul, and early counting of the omer in shul, nobody would say that one ...
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2answers
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Rambam placement of Hilchos Megilla vaChanukah

Why does the Rambam in Mishneh Torah in the Sefer Zmanim place Hilchos Chanukah and Hilchos Purim together in Megillah vaChanukah instead of just placing them separately and why in the title is ...
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1answer
65 views

Eating meat on Hannuka?

Is there a source to require eating meat at the Hanuka meal?
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2answers
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Marriv before/after lighting the Menorah

Does one need to Daven Marriv before lighting the Chanukah Menorah or can you light before davening? Why?
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1answer
168 views

Rambam versus Ramban on Maccabees' taking the kingship from Yehuda

The Ramban (Nahmanides) in Parshas Vayachi says that the the Maccabees' children where killed out because they took the kingship from Shevet Yehuda. I was told (in the name of Reb Solovechick) the ...
6
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2answers
170 views

Nice clothes for Hanukkah

Is there a reason to wear special nice clothing on Hanukkah? I would guess not as since there is no festive meal, it doesn't seem like it is a festive day. Ideas anyone?
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3answers
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Were the Books of Maccabees found in the Dead Sea Scrolls?

Were there copies of any of the Books of Maccabees (and/or Megillas Antiochus) found amongst in the Dead Sea Scrolls?
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Which night of Chanuka should you give out Chanuka Gelt?

Is there a specific night of Chanuka that is better to give out Chanuka Gelt?
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44 views

בימי מתתיהו בן יוחנן כהן גדול - who was the Kohain Gadol? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Bmei Matisyahu ben Yochnan Kohen Godol בימי מתתיהו בן יוחנן כהן גדול - In the days of Matisyahu ben Yochanan Kohain Gadol --"Al Hanisim" prayer said on Chanuka Who ...
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2answers
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Pronunciation of חשמונאי

A friend today told me that the word חשמונאי traditionally pronounced "Chashmonai" should really be pronounced "Chashmunai" with the vav being read as a shuruk vowel instead of a cholom. Is this ...
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0answers
82 views

Where's the eighth miracle? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Beis Yosef Question Inspired by this question. If the sealed jug of oil that they found had enough to light the Menorah for one day, then there were only seven ...
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1answer
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Sheasa Nisim ALL 8 nights? [closed]

Why do we say SheAsa Nisim all 8 nights? Shouldn't we only say it one night, the first?
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2answers
210 views

What is the story of Yehudit which takes place during the Chanukkah Story?

I have heard many varying and conflicting stories about Yehudit and her effect on the war with the Greeks at Chanukkah time and was wondering if anyone has sources for her story and what it truly is. ...