Rabbi Daniel Glatstein (The Light And The Splendor, p. 336-337) quotes the Rokeach, Rabbi Elazar Rokeach of Worms and mentions the following parable:

When a new building is complete, the first inaugural event is to "turn on the lights". Hashem created the world, and at the end of His creative process, He inaugurated the world by tuning on the lights!

In the footnote of this book, the Rokeach is mentioned (Rokeach HaGadol, Hilchos Chanukah) but I can't seem to find this parable. He seems to be citing the Yerushalmi that explains that there were 36 hours between the creation of the special light and the moment it was hidden away by Hashem.

Does anyone know if this is actually attributed to the Rokeach and where this can be found?

1 Answer 1


I think it was perhaps Rabbi Glatstein embellishing a little.

Refer to the bottom few lines of the first paragraph:

כן יהיה בחנוכה בית חשמונים ומדליקין בחנוכה ל"ו נרות לפי שבחנוכת העולם ויתן אתם אלהים ברקיע השמים להאיר וכדאיתא בפסיק' רבתי אותה אורה שנשתמש אדם הראשון היתה ל"ו שעות כדאיתא בבראשית רבה יום ו' י"ב שעות וליל ז' י"ב שעות ויום ז' י"ב שעות וכשיצאו ל"ו שעות החשיך העולם

Similarly, it was with the dedication/inauguration of the Chashmonaim, and we light 36 candles over the course of Chanukah (1+2+3+4+5+6+7+8=36), corresponding to the inauguration of the world - "And G-d set them in the expanse of the sky to illuminate" (Bereishis 1:17), And like it brings in Pesikta Rabbasi, the same (primordial) light was used by Adam HaRishon 36 hours. Like it also brings in Bereishis Rabbah - twelve hours on the day before Shabbos, twelve on the night of Shabbos, and twelve on Shabbos, and when the 36 hours were over, the world became dark.

  • 1
    Thank you. I guess that's it yes. Maybe Rabbi Glatstein got inspired by the explanation of the Darkei Mussar on parshas Shelach, where he says that the first thing one needs to do in a new house, is "to open the windows to let fresh air in" - this refers to Torah, explains Rabbi Neimann. Maybe this can also be connected with the light of chanukah. A freiliche und lechtige Chanukah!
    – Shmuel
    Dec 8, 2023 at 9:58

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