Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
 
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Chapter 139:4
Chanukah

4. All oils may be used for the Chanukah lights (1). Nevertheless, the most desirable way of performing the mitzvah ("mitzvah min ha'muvchar") is to use olive oil, similar to the miracle [of Chanukah] in the Beis Hamikdash (Temple), which occurred through olive oil.

If olive oil is not easily available, a person should choose another oil whose light is pure and clean. Alternatively, he should use beeswax candles, which also produce a pure light.

Two wicks should not be wound together, because this would resemble a torch. Instead, a single candle should be used. One should not use beeswax from temples of idol worship, because this is considered to be repulsive ("Ma'us").

Similarly, the wicks used for the Chanukah candles may be made from any substance. The most desirable way of performing the mitzvah ("mitzvah min ha'muvchar"), however, is to use cotton. There is no need to use new wicks each night. One may rekindle those used previously until they are burned up.

FOOTNOTES:

(1) There are certain inferior oils and wicks that one is not permitted to use for Shabbos candles, because they do not light well. Since the primary purpose of Shabbos candles is for illumination, the Sages feared that one may inadvertently tilt or attempt to fix the flame on Shabbos, in order to improve the light, an act which is prohibited. The Sages did not have the same concerns regarding Chanukah lights, because one is forbidden to use the Chanukah lights for personal use, and therefore, one would not be tempted to fix the Chanukah flames on Shabbos. Another reason that one is permitted to use inferior oils or wicks for the Chanukah lights, is that, as we shall see, once one has lit the Chanukah flames, one has fulfilled the mitzvah, and even if they become extinguished immediately after the lighting, one is not required to rekindle the flame (Of course, one should do one's best to use good quality oil and wicks).

 

Back Paragraphs 2-3 Table of Contents Paragraph 5 Next 

 

Halacha-Yomi, Copyright © 2003 Torah.org


 






ARTICLES ON LECH LECHA:

View Complete List

Learning How To Walk
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5761

Better A Second Time Around
Shlomo Katz - 5767

Bordering on the Holy Land
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5766

Looking for a Chavrusah?

Avraham's Legacy to his Descendants
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5771

Home Sweet Home
Rabbi Naftali Reich - 5773

Ask for Spiritual Wealth
Shlomo Katz - 5762

ArtScroll

Location is Everything
Rabbi Yissocher Frand - 5763

Exile and Redemption
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5763

Lech Lecha: Avraham "Our Father"
Shlomo Katz - 5766

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

Bris Milah: Mark of Distinction
Rabbi Osher Chaim Levene - 5766

Spiritual Lamarckism
Rabbi Dovid Begoun - 5766

Cloudy Vision
Rabbi Naftali Reich - 5768

> No Second Thoughts
Rabbi Pinchas Avruch - 5764

To the Land That I Will Show You
Rabbi Label Lam - 5763

Nowhere Man
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5764

Redefining Pleasure
Rabbi Yochanan Zweig - 5772



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information