Hanukkah begins during the month of Kislev, which invites us into a space of dreaming, a space of the dark, growth, and possibility.
When we light the Hanukkah candles, we’re honoring both the story of a miracle — when a small amount of oil lasted eight nights — and generations of tradition, including two different perspectives from Rabbis Hillel and Shammai.
In Rabbi Hillel’s tradition, we start with one candle and add one more each night, celebrating the expansion of the miracle by growing the light. In Rabbi Shammai’s tradition, we start with eight candles and decrease by one each night, shrinking the light to represent the diminishing oil.
This year, we invite you to choose the path that makes the most sense for you.
Hanukkah is an opportunity to dream big and rededicate ourselves to the fights ahead.
One example of “dreaming big” we’re proud to support this Hanukkah is the BREATHE Act, a visionary legislative framework introduced by the Movement for Black Lives in 2020, which calls for the divestment of our taxpayer dollars from brutal and discriminatory policing and invests in a new vision of public safety.
The BREATHE Act offers us a new path forward — and new possibilities for ourselves and future generations.
It’s in that spirit that we created our new Hanukkah Text Study resource to help ground your Hanukkah rededication, including:
- an offering for Hanukkah blessings
- a resource on the BREATHE Act
- an explanation of the chevruta (partnership) method of learning
- two text studies to explore
As we light our candles here at Bend the Arc, we rededicate ourselves to investing in the future we each deserve and need, a future our rabbis dreamed of and the Movement for Black Lives is putting into motion: one where we are all safe, we no longer rely on prisons and police, and our communities are healthy.
May we keep lighting the flame of liberation together.
Chag Hanukkah sameach (Happy Hanukkah),
The Bend the Arc team