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Countdown to Chanukah 4

There are a total of 36 Chanukah candles, not including the Shamash. The Shamash should stand above the other candles, as the verse says, “Seraphim omidim mimaal lo,”  “Seraphim were standing above (the throne) at His service,” (Isaiah 6:2)  “lo” is lamed vav – the 36 candles of Chanukah. (Maharil)

The candles themselves may not be used for light. They are holy. The Shamash stands at their service, above them. “The Holy One, Blessed is He, compares Israel to the Angels: Just as the Seraphim stand, so too, Israel stands, “You are standing today.” (Deuteronomy 29:9) Just as the Angels sing, “Holy, Holy, Holy,” so too, Israel sings “Holy, Holy, Holy.” (Shemot Rabbah 15:7)

When we light the Chanukah Candles, we stand as the Seraphim, ready to serve and honor our creator. When we treat the Chanukah candles with appropriate holiness, we emulate the song of the Angels, “Holy, Holy, Holy!”

Treat the Mitzvah of lighting the Chanukah candles as an expression of song, “Holy, Holy, Holy!”

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