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Chanukah Audio Classes

Discover more about Chanukah in these fascinating classes and lectures on the Chanukah themes.

My Chanukah Your Chanukah?
Chanukah... Are we simply celebrating miracles of long ago or experiencing our own version of this story in our daily lives in the 21st century?
The Miracle Is Us
Audio | 1:19:43
The Miracle Is Us
The miracle of the oil raises us beyond the natural human experience. This gives us a light which can elevate all mankind.
The Greeks, Jews & Macabees
What did the Greeks really want from the Jews? Did all Jews agree with the Macabes, and other Chanukah thoughts.
In the Courtyards of Light
On Chanukah we add the 'al hanissim' blessing in the Amidah prayer: “Your children entered the shrine of Your House ... kindled lights in Your holy courtyards.” The Menorah was usually lit in the Sanctuary of the Temple, not the outside courtyards!
The Maccabean Struggle
The historical events that surround the story of Chanukah, the inner struggle the Jews faced and the eternal message that lies therein for us today.
Two Minute Rabbi: Chanukah
A very short message on the holiday of Chanukah.
The Battle Over Wisdom - Part 1
Audio | 46:24
The Battle Over Wisdom
Part 1
Many wars have been fought over oil, but only one over olive oil. What did the Greeks have against Jewish oil, and what contemporary message does this unusual battle hold for us?
The Battle Over Wisdom - Part 2
Audio | 42:52
The Battle Over Wisdom
Part 2
Many wars have been fought over oil, but only one over olive oil. What did the Greeks have against Jewish oil, and what contemporary message does this unusual battle hold for us?
Chanukah - In Depth
Audio | 49:55
Chanukah - In Depth
This class presents a comprehensive understanding of the deeper meaning behind the miracle of Chanukah.
Chanukah and Tribal Judaism
Are Jewish tribal? There are two answers to this question, both correct: Yes. And no.
The Spiritual Menorah
Explore the inner dimension of the menorah and learn what it means in our own daily lives.
Miracle of the Maccabees
The Chanukah Story
This action-filled radio play portrays the miracle of Chanukah as a victory of Jewish spirit over the forces of assimilation.
Zos Chanukah
This class teaches the special significance of the last day of Chanukah, which is referred to as Zos Chanukah.
Chanukah - Advanced Learning
This is a series of advanced classes that provide a thorough understanding of Chanukah’s inner themes.
Halachah: Chanukah
Halachah: Chanukah
The various halachot associated with the holiday of Chanukah.
The Scroll of Antiochus
The Holiday of Chanukah
The Scroll of Antiochus is an account of the Chanukah story written originally in Aramaic. What can we learn about Chanukah by comparing the Scroll of Antiochus to the Purim story written in the Scroll of Esther?
Does Chanukah Commemorate War or Peace?
Two Versions of the Timeline of the Maccabee's Victory
Among the early Talmudic commentaries, there are two opinions about the chronology of events commemorated on Chanukah. One says that the war was won on the 24th of Kislev and that the first day of Chanukah, the 25th of Kislev, is the anniversary of the first day of peace. The other says that on one day, the 25th of Kislev, the Maccabees both won the war and rededicated the Temple.
What Does the Name
Letters and Numbers of the Festivals—Chanukah
The name Chanukah itself contains many hints to the deeper meaning of the festival.
How Do You Spell
Letters and Numbers of the Festivals—Chanukah
The first letter of the word Chanukah is the eighth letter of the Hebrew alphabet "chet." What secrets are contained within the shape and numerical value of the letter "chet" that can teach us about the meaning of Chanukah?
The Light of Your Soul
Chassidic perspectives on Chanukah
The Talmud on Lighting the Chanukah Menorah
Learn the text of the Gemara and its nuanced reasoning
The Secrets of the Flames
Understanding the Eight Days of Chanukah
Why do we celebrate Chanukah for eight days? Why does the Chanukah menorah have eight candles?
A Kabbalistic Spin on Dreidel
Playing dreidel (spinning top) is a popular Chanukah custom. Discover layers of meaning in this fun tradition.
Hereditary Belief
Audio | 52:02
Hereditary Belief
Judaism and genetic memory
The uniqueness of the miracle of Chanukah, the triumph of the supernatural over the natural and how we inherit faith.
The Triumph of Jerusalem Over Athens
Chanukah and the Miracle of Jewish Survival
The Jews' devotion to maintaining their spiritual freedom can only be described as supernatural. What gives us this miraculous strength?
Women and Chanukah
Audio | 20:40
Women and Chanukah
Exploring the feminine connection on five levels
Chanukah: Maccabee or Masada
Thoughts on our generation’s desire for life-affirming messages of Jewish pride and heroism.
Chanukah in Three Dimensions
The Victory, the Oil, and the Miracle of Lights
On the 24th of Kislev (according to most views) the Maccabees succeeded in expelling the occupying Greek army. On the 25th of Kislev the Jews discovered the pure cruse of oil. On the 26th of Kislev the miracle of the oil lasting beyond one day became manifest. This class will explain the spiritual and personal significance of these events. (Maamor V'Atoh B'rachamecho 5748)
Victory. But When?
Audio | 19:55
Victory. But When?
Celebrating Chanukah: the miraculous and the natural
There are two views as to when the Jews completely defeated the Greeks. One view maintains that it was on the 25th of Kislev – the day that Chanukah begins. The other view posits that the final victory occurred the day prior and the Chanukah celebration marks the first day of actual freedom. This class will explore both opinions and reveal their timely message. (Toras Menachem, Chanukah 5748)
Light-Up or Lights-Down?
Two schools of thought on kindling the menorah
The Academy of Hillel says that the optimum manner to light the Chanukah candles is to light one the first night, adding a candle each subsequent night of the holiday. The Academy of Shamai maintain that the desired method is to kindle 8 flames on the first night, 7 on the second night, diminishing the number each night so that one flame is lit on the last night. This class will explore these contrasting views and shed light on life's most existential questions.
To Burn or Not to Burn
Questioning the Miracle of the Oil
Inasmuch that there was enough oil for one day, the fact the oil lasted for 8 days means that the Chanukah miracle was actually only 7 days. Why then do we celebrate for 8 days? This class offers a novel and inspiring answer.
Chassidism and Chanukah
The month of Kislev is replete with Chassidic milestones, the most famous of which is Yud Tes Kislev (the 19th of Kislev) known as the Rosh Hashanah of Chassidus. Six days later, on the 25th of Kislev, begins the festival of Chanukah. This class will explore the connection between these two celebrations and the message for our times.
The Evolution of Light
The menorah of the Holy Temple, the Shabbat candles and the Chanukah lights—three movements in the divinely-ordained mission of illuminating all of existence. This class will explore these stages on a historical and personal level.
The Symbolism of the Menorah
The Light of the Jewish People
The menorah is symbolic of the indestructible core essence of the Jew. Learn interesting elements of the menorah in the Holy Temple and their mystical significance.
Chanukah, Jewish Identity and the Message of the Light
As parents we need to ignite our children's flame of passion and ensure that their excitement for Yiddishkeit doesn't become extinguished.
Audio | 13:35