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Hong Kong Hanukah

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Topic: Chanukah, Maimonides

Ido from Hong Kong, China wrote:

Dear Rabbi,

My name is Ido and I have a question. Before that I would like to speak about myself: I am nine years old, I live in Hong Kong (China) speak Hebrew, I go to a Jewish school called Carmel School and I am sure you heard of my Jewish studies teacher, Rabbi Avtzon (one of the most popular guys in Asia). Here's the question: What does Maimonides tell us about the importance of Chanukah?

Dear Ido,

Maimonides (Rambam - Rabbi Moses ben Maimon) relates that the Greeks tried to destroy Judaism. They didn't let us study the Torah or observe the commandments. Finally, Hashem had mercy on us and we defeated them.

Then Maimonides writes about the miracle of one day's oil which burned for eight days. Because of this, our Sages established Chanuka as a time of joy and praise to Hashem. We light candles to remind ourselves of the miracle of the oil. This teaches us that although the military victory was a miracle, the spiritual victory was the essence of Chanuka.


  • Rambam, Hilchot Chanukah 3

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