20 September 2015 - 7 Tishri 5776 - ז' תשרי ה' אלפים תשע"ו
The number eight transcends the natural world E-mail

Do you sense there is more to life than you can touch or feel or smell? That there is a dimension to reality that cannot be experienced by any of your senses? Have you pondered the soul, the nonphysical core of your being which cannot be detected by x-ray technology? Do you believe in God? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then Chanukah is the holiday for you.

The world was created in seven days. There are seven notes in the musical scale, seven days of the week. Therefore, the number seven represents the physical world that we can touch and smell and feel.

Here is why:

The number eight, on the other hand transcends the natural world. That’s why the miraculous days of Chanukah are ‘eight.’ Though eight emanates from beyond our senses, your soul can still reach out and be touched by its force.

Anti-Milah Decree

The Greeks had a particular dislike of the Jewish practice of Brit Mila, the circumcision of a baby boy on the eighth day after his birth. In fact, they outlawed the practice of Brit Mila.

Why such string opposition?

First of all, circumcision offended the Greek idea of perfection of the human body. Public nudity was accepted in Greek society because every ‘body’ was another piece of art. Greek Olympic athletes competed naked.

To the Greeks, circumcision was mutilation of a masterpiece, like spraying graffiti on a Renoir. To the Jew, Brit Mila is one of the most essential expressions of Jewish identity. A human being can only achieve its greatest beauty if affected by a relationship with God.

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