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Why is it the woman's role to light the Shabbat candles?

Why is it the woman's role to light the Shabbat candles?


Our sages have declared that the privilege of lighting the Shabbat candles belongs to the woman because:

  • She is usually more involved in the running of the house, and spends more time at home.
  • Eve, by persuading her husband to eat of the tree of knowledge, brought death to the world and extinguished the "candle of G‑d." To atone for this, women kindle the Shabbat candles, reigniting the G‑dly spark.
  • It is the woman who determines the spirituality in the home. By encouraging the study of Torah and the meticulous performance of mitzvot, and through her nurturing presence, the woman transforms her home into a place of holiness, peace and tranquility. It is thus fitting that she be the one to bring the extra measure of light and holiness with the Shabbat candles.
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Torah UK September 17, 2013

I want to light Sabbath candles! Hi, I get the children pulling my candles from my hands and they light them instead of me, I really want to do it myself. How can I prove to them that it is my right to light Sabbath candles? Reply

Mr. Esteban S March 23, 2012

When there are women and men at home Hi there everyone, I was wondering: what do men do while women light the Shabbat candles ? do they also recite the Prayer ?
Thanks a lot, and Shabbat Shalom ! Reply

batyah goldsboro, nc August 28, 2011

Lighting Please Show me where it is written candles are to be lit on shabbat. Reply

Yochanan United Kingdom May 13, 2017
in response to batyah:

This is a tradition, not a command. But in understanding the nature and beauty of G-d and in recognition of His creation of Adam v'Chava, it is both harmless and inspirational.
"זָכָ֥ר וּנְקֵבָ֖ה בְּרָאָ֑ם וַיְבָ֣רֶךְ אֹתָ֗ם וַיִּקְרָ֤א אֶת־שְׁמָם֙ אָדָ֔ם בְּי֖וֹם הִבָּֽרְאָֽם"
Man is nothing without woman. Reply

Anonymous Andalusia, AL August 23, 2011

candle lighting : Shabbat This article is very spiritual to me .
is just what I needed.
Thank you for very much. Reply

Anonymous nuremberg, germany November 19, 2010

women and candle loghting i have always wondered about this. your explanation and its connection to the biblcal past is really illuminating and deeply meaningful. many thanks! Reply

Anonymous EHT, NJ September 23, 2010

Candle lighting: Shabbat This article is very spiritual to me,and is just what I needed. Thank you for very much for posting! Reply

Welcome to our candle-lighting section, where you will find the details and practicalities of lighting Shabbat candles, along with the meaning, spirituality and power of doing so . . .
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