Kibbutz Nave Eitan
In those days in this time
Chanukah 5734, 1973
The Festival of Lights 5733. The lights are slightly dim, the traditional songs are not breaking out with festivity and spontaneity – something in us is holding back the completeness of the heartfelt joy. Moreover, the festival is more significant this time: remembering the heroism of the Maccabees, as told in the Books of the Maccabees – the tough war, the sacrifice, the devotion and the heroism – are more tangible, the light of heroism in Israel, upon which we were educated in every generation, and which is now expressed in our generation.
The renewal of independence and its wars of existence and fortification – continues, changes shape, changes enemies, however the contents remain. The wars of the Hasmoneans and that colossal revolt have been totally archived, from the land of the religious faith which was the basis for the national consolidation of the children of Israel at that time, however there is no doubt that the revolt of the Maccabees also had national content in the modern perspective of promise, the will to survive, and the strong and decisive desire to continue the tradition of Israel brought about total devotion, demonstrations of supreme heroism and willingness to sacrifice.
In our times, the factors composing our national identity are more complex. The long exile, the values in understanding the material world and human contemplation, have eroded the faith of man in the transcendental forces and have placed man in the centre. However Jewish man, who is related by thousands of threads to his heritage, consciously or unconsciously, by an internal urge, or as a result of external pressure – safeguards the embers of faith. This, wears different forms, but has been expressed mainly by involvement of Jewish youth in our national freedom movement – the Zionist revolution.
The acts of heroism and sacrifice in the Yom Kippur war, can only be described by the light of their historical wonders, whereby the Hasmonean revolt is the most significant.
Indeed, there is significance to the Chanukah candles of 5734