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HAPPY HANUKKAH (Chanukah) ^ | Dec. 18, 2003 | Carlo3b Dad, Chef, Author

Posted on 12/18/2003 6:30:28 AM PST by carlo3b


". . . and May This Festival of Lights bring Blessings
upon you and All Your Loved Ones for Happiness,
for Health, and for Spiritual and Material Wealth,
and May the Lights of Chanukah Usher in the Light of Moshiach
and a Better World for All of Humankind."

The Victory over Antiochus

More than 2000 years ago, the land of Judea was ruled by Antiochus, a tyrannical Syrian king. Even today, people fight wars over their gods, despite claims to value "religious tolerance." But a couple of thousand years ago, religious tolerance didn't exist at all. Religion was as good an excuse as any to oppress a people.

That's precisely what Antiochus did to the Jews: he forbade them to observe the Sabbath or study their religious text, the Torah, and he erected a statue of Zeus in their sacred temple of Jerusalem. Many Jews followed his decrees, because they had no choice; those who resisted were executed.

In 167 B.C., the Jews -- driven to desperation -- rose up against Antiochus. Mattathias, a well-respected priest, gathered together an army and put his five sons in charge. Judah and his brothers wanted a name for their battalion that would signify force and strength; "Maccabee", meaning "hammer", fit the bill. It took three years of fighting, but eventually the Maccabees drove the Syrians out of Israel and reclaimed the temple in Jerusalem.

Naturally, the Maccabees quickly got rid of the statue of Zeus. Then they cleansed and purified the temple, and rekindled the menorah, a candelabra that symbolized God's Divine Presence. Oddly enough, although it only held enough oil to burn for a single day, the menorah burned for eight. This was the miracle.


About the Menorah
To Jews and non-Jews alike, the menorah, or Hanukkiya, is the most recognizable symbol of Hanukkah. It's usually a nine-branch candelabrum whose candles are lit by a "shamash" or service candle which then takes its own place at the centre of the menorah. The menorah itself is placed in a window or anywhere it can be seen by passers-by.

Lighting the Menorah
On the first night of Hanukkah, a single candle (or oil wick) is lit on the far right side of the menorah. A candle is added, from right to left, each night, and the newest candle is always lit first. Ideally, the candles should be lit as soon as stars become visible in the night sky, but they can be lit late into the night. While the candles are being lit and the blessing given, the whole family and any guests gather to witness the ceremony; everyone is encouraged to participate. By the eighth night, with all eight candles lit, the menorah makes a spectacular sight. And as they did the previous evenings, the candles will continue to shine until they burn themselves out.

The Blessing
The first blessing thanks God for the commandment to "kindle the Hanukkah lights."

  Baruch Atah Adonai Elohenu Melech Ha-olam Asher Kidshanu B'mitzvotav V'tzivanu L'hadlik Ner Shel Hanukkah.
Blessed is Adonai our God, Ruler of the Universe, by whose Mitzvot we are hallowed, who commands us to kindle the Hanukkah lights.

The second blessing praises God for the miracle the candles symbolize; it's said as the candles are being lit.
  Baruch Atah Adonia Elohenu Melech Ha-olam She-asa Nissim L'votenu Bayamim Ha-hem Ba-ZmanHa-zeh.
Blessed is Adonai our God, Ruler of the Universe, who performed wonderous deeds for our ancestors in days of old, at this season.
On the first night of Hanukkah the "shehechiyanu" blessing is included, to signify that this is the first time the Hanukkah lights have been lit this season.

 Hanukkah is a "Festival of Lights" to celebrate the victory of the Jewish Maccabees over the Syrians, and the rededication of the Jerusalem Temple. The holiday also commemorates the miracle of the oil that burned for eight days.

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KEYWORDS: chanukah; hanukkah; hebrew; kosher
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The Secret of the Dreidel
by Rabbi Yaakov Asher Sinclair

A Children's Game That Contains the Story of the Jewish People


The Dreidel

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A children's game, played in the firelight of a cold winter night, the Chanukah Menorah silently glowing in the window... The dreidel. Its four sides spinning around the still point in the turning circle; spinning so fast that its sides blur into nothingness... The dreidel. So seemingly insignificant - and yet this little dreidel contains the story of the Jewish People; the history of the whole world...

Our story

starts not with the miracle of Chanukah, but 1,437 years earlier with Jacob's ladder. Jacob had a prophetic dream of angels ascending and descending a ladder that reached from the ground to the heavens. These angels weren't Hollywood extras with fluorescent tubes over their heads - they were, in fact, incorporeal spiritual messengers - the protecting forces of four great kingdoms. 

Four kingdoms that would in the future dominate and exile the Jewish People: Babylon, Persia, Greece and Rome

At first, Yaakov saw the angel of Babylon ascend the ladder 70 steps and then he came down: The Jewish People were in the Babylonian exile for 70 years. 

The protecting angel of the Empire of Persia and Media then climbed up the ladder 52 steps before he descended: The Jewish People were in exile in Persia 52 years. 

Then the angel of the Empire of Greece climbed 180 rungs - the domination of Greece lasted 180 years. 

Finally, the protecting angel of the Roman Empire climbed up the ladder, but he didn't come down. Yaakov feared that this final exile would never end, until Hashem promised Yaakov - If he will rise up like an eagle and make his nest among the stars - even from there I will bring him down.

We are still in that final exile, in the softly asphyxiating embrace of Rome's spiritual heirs....

The Four Kingdoms


In the year 3338 (587/6 BCE), the first of our Holy Temples was razed to the ground by the Babylonian Emperor Nabuchadnezer, and the majority of the Jewish People led into exile by the Assyrian Emperor Sancheriv. Why was it such a tragedy that the Beis Hamikdash (Holy Temple) was destroyed? The Beis Hamikdash represents a unique pipeline between Hashem and Man. When it was destroyed, this flow of spiritual energy was severed. The level of this connection is linked to the word "nefesh" - soul ("When a soul will bring an offering"...Vayikra 2:1). Nefesh begins with the letter Nun, and Nun represents the kingdom of Babylon.


As we know from the story of Esther, Haman was interested in finding the final solution of the Jewish problem - genocide. The exile of Persia and Media represents the threat to the "guf" - the body of the Jewish People, the physical threat of annihilation. Guf begins with Gimmel which stands for the kingdom of Persia and Media.


Greece, on the other hand, represents the attack on the Torah itself - the sechel - the wisdom of Israel. The Greeks weren't interested in the physical destruction of the Jewish People; rather they wanted to destroy the spiritual core of Judaism - the Torah - and leave a Hellenized hulk that would conform to the Greek norms of aesthetics - drama and the superficial wisdoms. Sechel begins with the letter Sin - that's the letter of the kingdom of Greece.


The fourth kingdom, Rome, is a summation of all the other exiles. At the beginning of their domination, the Romans, like the Babylonians, stopped the bringing of offerings in the Temple. Then, they destroyed the second Holy Temple and inflicted unthinkable carnage on the "guf", the body of Jewish People: After the massacre of Betar, they used Jewish blood as fertilizer for seven years.

At first, Rome was the intellectual scion of Greece, but with the conversion of the emperor Constantine to Christianity in 313 CE, the Catholic Church became the spiritual heir of the Roman Empire. After the demise of the influence of the Church, the mantle of Rome was subsequently worn by secularism and materialism - the spiritual incarnation of Rome in our own times.
Rome is all the exiles rolled into one and thus it is represented by the Hebrew word "HaKol," meaning "all". Its first letter is the letter Heh.

WHERE is the point at the center of a circle?

Can you define it? And yet it exists. Just like the letter 'yud' in the Hebrew alphabet - a single dot - from which the whole universe was created - the threshold of existence. The still point in the turning circle - and around that dot turns the whole world. The Jewish People are that little dot - so infinitesimally small, and yet around this dot, the world turns.

WHAT is the opposite to that little dot?

What is the opposite of the central point that occupies no space? Direction - North, South, East and West. Expansion in four directions. Four is the antithesis of the One. Four is the number of the Kingdoms who stand eternally opposed to the Jewish People. Eternally opposed to He who is One. And to His reflection in this world - the Jewish People. 

TAKE another look at our dreidel spinning.

What do you see? Four sides. Spinning around a central point that occupies no space. And when those sides spin - they themselves cease to have direction anymore. Now, in the blur of their whirling - they are a circle, a reflection of the still small point at its center.

WHAT is it that is carved on the sides of our dreidel?

Nun, Gimmel, Sin, Heh... On the surface, those letters stand for "Nes Gadol Hayah Sham - A great miracle happened there" - The commemoration of a miraculous victory of a faithful few over the might of the Greek Empire. But on a deeper level, the dreidel is a microcosmic representation of the four kingdoms, Babylon, Persia, Greece and Rome spinning around the center, the Jewish People.

AND The Hand that spins the dreidel comes from above...

Every empire thinks that it will last forever, but The Hand that spins only spins the dreidel of history for predetermined time and then, each Empire, despite its vainglorious boasting, falters on its axis...and finally crashes. 

THE DREIDEL. A children's game,

played in the firelight of a cold winter night, the Chanukah Menorah silently glowing in the window... The dreidel. Its four sides spinning around the still point in the turning circle; spinning so fast that its sides blur into nothingness... The dreidel. So seemingly insignificant - and yet this little dreidel contains the story of the Jewish People; the history of the whole world... 

Happy Chanukah!


  • Ramban Bereishis 28:12

  • Pirkei D'Rebbe Eliezer 35

  • Maharal Ner Mitzvah

  • Bnei Yisasschar, Kislev/Teves, Essay 2:25

  • ibid. Commentary on Bnei Yisasschar; Rav Nachman Bulman.


1 posted on 12/18/2003 6:30:28 AM PST by carlo3b
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To: carlo3b
What? No food? You want maybe we should starve?
2 posted on 12/18/2003 6:34:26 AM PST by AppyPappy (If You're Not A Part Of The Solution, There's Good Money To Be Made In Prolonging The Problem.)
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To: Jim Robinson; Bob J; christie; stanz; jellybean; Angelique; Howie; TwoStep; piasa; Exit148; ...
Here is your chance to GET ON or GET OFF this and other Carlo3B, all important..(LOVE AMERICA, This is Your Country), (I'll be Damned), (Bwhahhahahh), (The Hell you say), (Aweeeeeee), (snif) ... PING LISTS.

If you wish to remain* on it, just sit back and enjoy our wonderful exchange of ideas and you will be alerted whenever we start posting, Historic, Patriotic, Family, and Diet, and a wholesome exchange of recipes and other valuable info re: various food management threads.

*If you have been flagged to this thread on this post, you are already on our temporary ping list.. :) Remember, other pings don't count... :(

To be removed** or added to the list, simply respond to this post publicly, on this thread, or Freepmail me with your preference.

3 posted on 12/18/2003 6:38:11 AM PST by carlo3b (
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To: AppyPappy
let's see if the jewish holidays get the same shovel of dirt we Christians are getting.
4 posted on 12/18/2003 6:38:47 AM PST by cars for sale
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To: AppyPappy


I grew up on Chicago's near west side, in what was later referred to as a ghetto, with lots of old world Italians, and Jewish folks! The Butcher shops, were almost all Kosher, and the owners spoke Italian as much as we'd  kibitz in yiddish.

This is a recipe that I make almost every other week and use the rich broth for a mess of stuff.  I don't keep a Kosher kitchen, but I still frequent the Kosher bakery, and meat market and freeze the bagels and chicken until I need them.

This is Mrs Levy's recipe our upstairs neighbor, given to my great aunt at least 50 years ago and has been passed around ever since..

  • 1 kosher chicken 3-4 lbs cut into eighths, you can find at a kosher butcher, or some major supermarkets have kosher packaged chickens, they are always plumper and fresher, but a lot more expensive.. :(
  • 3 med. carrots cut into thirds
  • 1 whole medium onion, cut into quarters
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 2 stalks celery (optional, l don't always use it)
  • 1/2 bunch fresh dill (do NOT use dried dill weed)
1) Clean chicken, put into a dutch oven, cover with water up to 1/8th from the top of the pot. Add carrots, onion, and celery.  High heat until water begins to boil, then lower flame to simmer. Cook uncovered for 2 or more hours, add wine and fresh washed dill (including the stalks, I tie the stems together, or wrap them in cheese cloth), continue cooking for 20 minutes.
Take out dill and throw away.  Enjoy!
My youngest son makes the matzo balls following the easy directions on the box of matzo meal and serve them in the soup.
I also cook fine noodles and serve it with the soup as well.  Heaven on earth!!!

5 posted on 12/18/2003 6:40:04 AM PST by carlo3b (
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To: cars for sale
Probably, they offend the media's chosen darlings, the muslims.
6 posted on 12/18/2003 6:41:11 AM PST by AppyPappy (If You're Not A Part Of The Solution, There's Good Money To Be Made In Prolonging The Problem.)
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To: cars for sale
Behave.. eat, you'll feel better..LOL.. :)


This is an old traditional Jewish holiday main course, that never disappoints.. enjoy!

  • 4-5 lb. brisket of beef
  • 1/4 cup kosher salt , large grained
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/2  tsp. ground cloves
  • 2 lg. bay leaves, crumbled
  • 1 Tbls. brown sugar
  • 1/8  tsp. nutmeg, fresh ground if possible
  • 1/8  tsp. paprika
  • 3 lg. cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbls. saltpeter* (optional)
  • 1/2 cup warm water
Prepare your brisket in a large, nonmetal container, by weight the meat down with a stone or brick and cover it with plastic wrap or aluminum foil.  Refrigerate for 10 days to 2 weeks. Turn the meat every 2 days.
1) Trim, wash and remove most of the fat from the brisket.
2) Mix together all the spices and the garlic and rub well into the brisket.
3)  Dissolve the salt peter in the warm water and pour over the meat.
4) Unwrap and place the meat in a large pot of cold water. Bring to a boil and throw away the water. Repeat 3 times.
5)  Cover with cold water again, bring to a boil, and cook over low heat, covered, for about 2 hours or until tender. Cool, slice thin, and place on a platter. Serve with mustard or horseradish.
Yield: 8 to 10 Servings
*saltpeter, can be found at your local drug store,  careful though, or it could remove some of the Happy, from your Happy Hanukkah.. eyes rolling.. Hahahahaha..

7 posted on 12/18/2003 6:41:58 AM PST by carlo3b (
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To: carlo3b
We always make latkes for Hanakkah. Just because we like them.
8 posted on 12/18/2003 6:42:15 AM PST by AppyPappy (If You're Not A Part Of The Solution, There's Good Money To Be Made In Prolonging The Problem.)
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To: Lazamataz
9 posted on 12/18/2003 6:42:21 AM PST by cjshapi
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To: cars for sale
Of course not, their 95-98% Democrat!

Pray for W and Merry Christ's Night to Our Jewish Friends

10 posted on 12/18/2003 6:43:03 AM PST by bray (The Wicked Witch of NY is Taking the Rats Down in Flames!)
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To: cjshapi
Fillet Of Sole Garlic Florentine

Here it is, Kosher, as requested, with metric measurements. It doesn't get much better than this!
This elegant dish makes a great dinner and is especially nice for a Shabbat or holiday meal.

1) Melt the 2 T. of butter with the garlic and mix into the spinach. Put aside and keep warm.
2) Poach the fish in the wine over a low heat until tender (around 10-12 minutes).
3) Put the spinach into a rectangular baking dish. Lay the fish on top of the spinach.
4) In a saucepan melt the 1/4 cup (60 ml) butter over medium low heat.
5) Add the salt, pepper and flour. Stirring continuously, add the milk/cream mixture and bring to a boil.
After one minute of boiling, remove from the heat and let cool for another minute.
6) Stir in the cheese and pour over the spinach and fish. Sprinkle with paprika and broil until browned lightly.
serves 6 lucky folks!

11 posted on 12/18/2003 6:43:29 AM PST by carlo3b (
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To: AppyPappy
You ask.. We deliver.. :)

Chanukah Latkes
By the light of the Chanukah Menorah, young and old enjoy this crisp, holiday treat!


Yields: 4 to 6 servings
Grate potatoes and onion on the fine side of a grater, or in a food processor; or put in a blender with a little water.
Strain grated potatoes and onion through a colander, pressing out excess water. Add eggs, flour, and seasoning. Mix well.
Heat ½ cup oil in skillet. Lower flame and place 1 large tablespoon batter at a time into hot sizzling oil and fry on one side for approximately 5 minutes until golden brown. Turn over and fry on other side 2 to 3 minutes.
Remove from pan and place on paper towels to drain excess oil. Continue with remaining batter until used up, adding more oil when necessary.
Serve with applesauce on the side.
Variation: Zucchini or Carrot Latkes: Substitute 5 medium zucchini or 5 medium carrots for potatoes.

Excerpted From: Spice and Spirit, The Complete Kosher Cookbook

Happy Holiday my dear friends......

12 posted on 12/18/2003 6:45:13 AM PST by carlo3b (
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To: carlo3b
behave ? that's rich...I simply made an observation by comparison and you can bet your wallet I'm watching too.
13 posted on 12/18/2003 6:47:00 AM PST by cars for sale
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To: cars for sale
see what I mean....
14 posted on 12/18/2003 6:50:34 AM PST by cars for sale
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To: carlo3b
Thanks. I'll be celebrating Hanukkah with Ilsa, but I don't know if I'll try the chicken soup again.
15 posted on 12/18/2003 6:51:17 AM PST by christie
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To: carlo3b
16 posted on 12/18/2003 6:54:01 AM PST by cjshapi
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To: carlo3b
Morning Carlo!

How are you?
17 posted on 12/18/2003 6:54:41 AM PST by Soaring Feather (I do Poetry.)
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To: carlo3b
Thanks Carlo! I might try and use that latkas recipe! Happy Channukkah to you too!
18 posted on 12/18/2003 6:55:48 AM PST by I_Love_My_Husband (Borders, Language, Culture, Straights - now more than ever)
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To: christie
Try these, and the soup again.. remember to put the Dill in at the very end.. Give Ilsa a big smooch from me.. :) What about Jury Duty? Did they kick you off because of the big BUSH CHENEY button on your hat.. LOLOL

19 posted on 12/18/2003 6:56:41 AM PST by carlo3b (
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To: cars for sale
So far we Jews have been dodge the bullet (no pun intended) from the libbies, and it may be indeed that many of my fellow tribesmen are misinformed about where there political leanings should be (I sure hope it really isn't 95% lib!). I am slowly finding more and more of my fellow tribesmen to be conservative (my family is entirely conservative, meeting the first liberal Jew was quite a shock -- I couldn't understand why any Jew would be liberal). I am sure, however, that as more and more Jews realize that Liberalism is the antithesis of what we truly believe, and we move more and more to the right, then, too, Jews and Judiasm will become just as much a target as true Christians.
20 posted on 12/18/2003 7:03:36 AM PST by USAF_TSgt (Eyes on MSgt in 2005)
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