Monday, December 22, 2008
Today, as we celebrate Hanukah, we should remember how the holiday began. Hanukah, as we say in al hanissim, commemorates the victory of the Jews in the Maccabean Revolt.
Interestingly, the Maccabean Revolt was primarily a civil war. Sadly, the Jewish people have never had a shortage of traitors and opportunists. Modern scholars have concluded that the revolt was basically a conflict between traditional Jews and Hellenizing Jews, with the Greeks merely, unwisely, intervening on the side of the Hellenizers. The first recorded casualty was a Hellenized Jew, killed by Matisyahu, a priest.
The outcome was that loyal Jews are still here today. On the other hand, the Hellenizers, together with their Greek patrons, have long ago been disposed of in the dust bin of history.
I have no doubt that today as well, the disagreements between the traditional, loyal Jews and the secularized “Jewish skeptics” will ultimately have the same result. In the same way that the Hellenized Jews worshipped the Greek pantheon and sacrificed swine, the secularized Jews believe in evolution. Both are equally pathetic. The Hellenizers had the Greek empire on their side. Modern secularizers have scientists and professors on their side. However in the end the righteous will prevail while the wicked will be destroyed.
Let’s all enjoy a truly happy Hanukah, light our menorahs and celebrate the miracle of the Torah’s survival in spite of all enemies, both internal and external.
Posted by jewish philosopher at 3:20 PM