Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Chanuka =Sukkos? More

Readers of the blog remember that last week I recycled an old post of mine (itself based on a famous Mis-nagid post) which argues that Chanuka was originaly conceived as a late Sukkos. Evidence for this includes its original name (Sukot b'Kislev) and the fact that the Book of Macabees tells us that, um, Chanuka was originaly conceived as a late Sukkos.

Deep in the comments of that post appear other, better, arguments for the same position, which are provided here for your consideration:

1 - Beit Shammai wanted to decrease the number of candles from eight to one over the course of the holiday. In their discussion of the underlying reasons for the respective rulings, the rabbis of the Talmud propose that Beit Shammai were taking their cue from the sacrifices on Sukkot. This makes sense only if we think of Chanuka as being a late Sukkos. (Josh Waxman)

2 - R' Yonason M'luniel, one of the mainstream accepted Ba'alei Tosafot, contemporary, and fellow Provence citizen of the Ra'avad, clearly states that Chanukah is 8 days because they were celebrating Sukkos. (flatbushrenegade)

3 - At the end of al hanisim we say "v'hidliku neiros b'chatzros hadshechah." We all know that the Menorah was in the heichal, not the chatzer, so why did the Macabees go outside? Because the lights lit each year on Succos for the simchas beis hashoevah, were... in the chatzer!(flatbushrenegade)

Isn't it amazing? Mis-nagid's famous and skeptical point, in fact, has a Torah-true pedigree.

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