Thursday, December 22, 2005

Commercializing Chanukah

Jewish Exponent:

...while businesses and retailers cash in on the season, some argue that commercializing Chanukah takes away from the true spirit of the eight-day celebration.
Ironically, notes Rabbi Avi Shafran, public-affairs director at Agudath Israel of America, the essence of the holiday is celebrating the victory of the Jewish people, who were devoted to one God and their Torah study, over a Greco-Syrian culture that valued scientific discoveries, cultural accomplishments and idols.
Chanukah parties have gotten a bit more festive since companies introduced patterns such as this one from Hallmark
Materialism, said Shafran, is actually what the Jews of 2,200 years ago were fighting against. Telling others about the miracle that occurred at the Temple - after the Jews regained possession of the site, one small vial of oil lit its menorah for eight days - and lighting the menorah, explained Shafran, is what the holiday should be about.
"If the rabbis wanted us to celebrate with dish towels and linens, they would have said so," noted Shafran. "It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see that [the merchandise] is an overflow from the larger culture."...
posted by Yeshiva Orthodoxy
at 3:46 PM


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Indeed! Sage comment.

3:02 AM  

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