Channukah: Judaism’s Most Minor ‘Major” Holiday

Channukah is the only ‘major’ holiday in Judaism that has no requirement of eating, drinking or joy.  Why didn’t Chazal make Channukah like Pesach or Sukkot or even Purim?

For that matter, why celebrate Channukah at all?  The miracle of the oil doesn’t seem to warrant an 8-day holiday, and many opinions suggest it wasn’t even necessary?  And the miracle of the war was quite short-lived; within 200 years Judea was back under Roman domination.

In this class, we discuss the problem Channukah posed to Chazal, its historical roots,  and its role in Judaism today.




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