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Simple-to-follow instructions on how to light the Shabbat candles.

Do-It-Yourself Shabbat Candles

Do-It-Yourself Shabbat Candles

How to Light the Shabbat Candles

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Discussion (25)
January 3, 2017
This was so beautiful and helpful. My daughter wants to start lighting candles with her daughter while on Skype with my mom and me. Four generations now lighting. It's a beautiful thing!
Sarah Cohen
Keller, Texas
October 23, 2015
Thank you, this was very helpful.
October 5, 2015
thank you
September 4, 2015
Thank you !!!
Lorena E.
Albuquerque, NM
August 13, 2014
To Amber
We may not extinguish flames on the Sabbath (unless there is a life threatening emergency aka a fire), hence we allow the candles to burn out on their own. Most candles last about three hours which is pretty much the same length as the Shabbat meal.
Chana Benjaminson
August 12, 2014
Who then blows out the candles?
Las Vegas
November 12, 2013
I am trying to become more observant, I decided about two years ago to start lighting candles and making our Shabbat dinner special. My husband was not interested at first, but gradually is getting used to the idea. He last week bought me two Shabbat candlesticks and I will surprise him this week by attempting to say the blessing in Hebrew. This is a terrific site for beginners, who want to learn.
July 10, 2013
To Rivky
Strictly speaking, one candle is sufficient, but as you write, it is customary to light two candles. The commandment to keep Shabbat is mentioned twice in the Torah; we are instructed to "remember" the day of Shabbat, and to "keep" it holy. Therefore, we light two candles, one to represent each term. Some add additional candles as well.

A divorced or widowed woman continues lighting the amount of candles that she has lit in the past. Customs differ regarding one who is single; a rabbi should be consulted. Chabad custom is that a single woman lights one candle.
Rochel Chein for
May 28, 2013
something I just learned this year...
Just to point out, a married woman lights two candles for Shabbos - one for Shamor - "Guard the Shabbos" and the other one for Zachor - "Remember the Shabbos". The Shulchan Aruch (Code of Jewish Law) does not mention them being specifically for her and her husband. (These 2 candles are besides the custom of lighting another candle for each child.)

The implications of this would be that a widowed or divorced woman still lights 2 candles. Similarly, if a single girl is living in her own house, she lights 2 candles for the Shabbos. Single men also light 2 Shabbos candles if they need to light their own.

Please correct me if this is wrong.
March 10, 2013
To Joy
The candles do not need to remain lit for 24 hours, rather they should remain lit at least until the kiddush is recited a couple hours after candle lighting time. Staff
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