Chanukkah, which begins this evening, is the festival of lights. We celebrate by lighting a candlabra each of the eight nights of the holiday, adding a candle each night.
Tonight as we light the first candle, the moon is waning, almost vanished. When the holiday ends, the moon will be waxing, becoming ever brighter. We, however, lighting the increasing number of candles assert the that the victory of hope over fears.
This year, more than most, we balance between hope and fear. Will the coming year bring prosperity and light, or despair and darkness? Lighting the candles, even as the moon disappears, even as the sun shines a little less each day, we assert that the light will return.
Chanukkah is, primarily, a holiday of the triumph of hope. The triumph over long odds. The victory of hope despite our fears.
May this holiday of light restore hope to all those in darkness, light to all in fear.