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How might the use of the Jewish menorah during Hanukka be considered magic?

What is the theoretical “purpose” of the menorah ritual?
Thanks, I’m writing an essay on religious traditions and the link between symbols and magic, and this is one of my examples but I don’t know much about Jewish practices…


  1. There is no magic associated with the lighting of the menorah. As we light it, we remember the light of salvation coming to the Maccabeans as they revolted. It’s a time when we believe G-d to bring us salvation & the light of the miraculous into our own personal lives.

  2. its for remembering the miracle of the oil. once during a battle a long time ago the Jews then had only enough oil to make it a short time, but turns out the oil lasted alot longer. so you light one new candle each night during Hanukkah to remember. that’s the short version i dont wanna bore you. it was supposed to be a miracle. most of Jewish tradition is very practical, not alot of magic. yom kippur you dont eat for a day, passover you cant eat bread for a week and you gotta eat some nasty herbs and unleavened crackers with an egg on the tray and raisins, that’s what we used..its all for remembering and provoking thought and appreciation. not magic.

  3. There really isn’t any “magic” in it…we light one candle each night until 8 candles burn to remember the victory of the Maccabees and how they restored the Temple to Jewish hands…when they went to light the Temple lamp, they saw that there was only enough oil for one day. The type of oil used in the Temple takes 7 days to make. The oil burned for 8 days (the time it took to make new oil) instead of one, which is a miracle that we remember each year.

  4. There is nothing magical about the menorah. Hanukkah is celebrated to commemorate the rededication of the Temple of Jerusalem after the victory of Judas Maccabaeus over the Syrians in 165 BCE, and the miracle of oil lamps.

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