Weekly MMM – Seeing the Invisible
My MMM for Chanukah will be about the holiday.
Specifically, I was looking into the most transcendent, consciousness-filled aspect of the holiday, and what I came up with is – Seeing The Invisible. I think that everything about Chaukah, what Chanukah is really all about, IS seeing the invisible.
We were fighting a spiritual war then, and we are fighting a spiritual war now. In the past it was with Greek people, and until this very day it has been a battle with Greek culture. The crux of the battle is whether or not invisible spirituality exists at all.
In the Greek way of thinking, it does not exist. If you can’t show something physically, or in dollars and cents, or prove it mathematically or scientifically, it simply does not exist.
There is beautiful and very profound philosophy, art, academic and athletic ability in Greek culture. These are all things you can prove; you can see them, touch them, and therefore prove them.
What drove the Greeks crazy about us, the Jewish people, was our insistence that the invisible is just as real, if not more real, than the visible. We lived, and we are still living our lives based on the invisible.
The Jewish belief in the invisible did not compute with Greek beliefs. But it’s actually what we bring to the world, because it was the inoculation we received on the first Chanukah. Every Chanukah, then, we celebrate the invisible.
Here’s one example – Chanukah is about three months after Rosh Hashanah, which time is considered a conception that begins a type of pregnancy. Three months into her pregnancy, a woman is showing. So, Chanukah is the time the Jewish people are showing, if you care to take a look at the invisible child within the womb, so to speak.
We can’t see into the womb, but we know there’s a child in there. Chanukah is a good time to see the invisible, the unveiling of our year, of our faith for the whole year that started on Rosh Hashanah.
This is also a time when we are able to see the invisible, hidden light, especially when we light the Chanukah candles. We are able to see a type of light that Adam could see, from one end of the world to the other. I believe that altogether there are a total of 36 lights that are lit during Chanukah, which is also the number of hours the hidden light shone after the creation of the world.
It was a hidden light, an invisible light, but an extremely important, spiritual light that gives us the ability to see beyond any boundaries. We can see the invisibility of lights within the darkness, during the darkest and coldest time of the year. It’s when we’re experiencing the longest nights and the shortest days when we light these tiny, little candles as a normal, weekday thing. They are not large and impressive, but we place them in our windows to show we’re maintaining our connection to the invisible. And we have been doing so for over 2000 years.
The tiny candles and the relative invisibleness is, in fact, very visible and very potent and apparent spiritually.
When the Greeks came and threatened one Macabee family in a town called Modiin, not far from Jerusalem, they were threatening to wipe us out if we, the Jewish people, did not accept the Greek way of life. The Greeks looked into their own power of invisibleness and they told us we have a choice. The power of no choice is also very empowering, and it’s what ultimately led them to win the war against us.
When we light the Chanukah candles we are able to see souls, if we open our eyes to see the invisible. They come and join us at that time, when we are lighting candles. They are parts of our own souls, coming up and asking to be reintegrated into who we are. Of course we are doing that all the time, bringing in lost parts of our souls, but in the light of the Chanukah candles it’s happening in a very powerful and accelerated way. This is another way we reconnect to that which is invisible.
Anything and everything that reconnects us to the invisible, whether it’s learning Torah or keeping Shabbat, the basic belief in an invisible G-d, is how we participate in making the invisible into something that’s visible. And that’s what’s being celebrated at Chanukah.
I believe there are unlimited aspects of invisibility we can find at Chanukah. We can do our best to open up the doors to the invisible and celebrate them in the light of Chanukah.
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